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Title: PSM in Fisheries & Wildlife Administration Student (2021-22)
Advisor: Rachael Orben
Education: B.S. Mathematics (minor in physics), Portland State University 2018
Graduate Certificate of Wildlife Management Student, Department of Fisheries, Wildelife, and Conservation Sciences 2021
Research Interests: Seabird conservation, foraging ecology, monitoring methods, mathematical ecology/population dynamics, migration ecology and behavior, indigenous ecological knowledge and community science.
My journey to fisheries and wildlife science began while I was working on a graduate degree in astrophysics in Leuven, Belgium. In 2019 I made a switch from the astronomical sciences to the ecological sciences and in 2020 I worked as a research intern with OSU’s Geospatial Ecology of Marine Megafauna (GEMM) Lab where I assisted in the tracking of gray whales and their fine-scale near-shore foraging habits along Oregon’s southern coast.
My PSM in Fisheries & Wildlife Administration with the Seabird Oceanography Lab is focused on developing a combination of tools designed to better understand the ecology of Oregon’s imperiled tufted puffin population. In particular we hope to quantify tufted puffin chick diet composition by photographing puffins with bill-loads at the Haystack Rock colony, located in Cannon Beach. At the same time, I will be documenting predator disturbances impacting the colony. And, in collaboration with the Oregon Coast National Wildlife Refuges, I am coordinating efforts to collect tufted puffin specimens for genetic analysis.
I developed a community science program “Birds with Fish” as my Graduate Certificate of Wildlife Management Student capestone project. Birds with Fish targets skilled amateur wildlife photographers interested in submitting their photos of waterbirds (e.g. tufted puffins, pigeon guillemots, common murres, osprey, herons) with fish to supplement our data collection efforts and gain a better understanding of piscivorous bird diets along the Oregon coast. If you have any pictures of seabirds with bill-loads, please submit them through our project website!