Guyana 2018 Team Members

Leo Jhaveri

picture1Year 3 BSc Hons Zoology (21)

Role: Team Leader

The Guyana Expedition 2018 will be Leo’s third expedition with the University of Glasgow, having been a member of of the Egypt Marine Expedition 2016, and leading the 2017 Guyana Expedition. In Egypt, he acted as research assistant (coral ecology and fish behavioural studies) and overseer of safety, equipment, and scuba diving procedures. He also proved the best communicator with local people and enhanced the expedition’s community outreach. This expedition prepared him with the great skill in teamwork, fundraising and field work. Previous projects, courses, and work have provided him with well developed hand-on research skills as well as collaborative and teaching skills. Leo has lead large scale projects before and understands the importance of personal commitment and joint efforts.

Leo’s knowledge of Guyana from last year’s inaugural Guyana Expedition, prepare him to lead again, taking a new team into the remote south Guyanese rainforest to further explore the Kanuku Mountains, whilst he also carries out his own mammals project. Leo has prior experience in trekking and boating in the South East Asian tropics of Malaysia and knowledge of its terrestrial wildlife. He also has practical knowledge of animal tracking, bird and frog identification by call, bush survival and safety, and dangerous animal approach from field guide work in South Africa, applicable to the endeavours that will be undertaken on this expedition. Leo is well aware of the challenges and vital team collaboration required for the expedition to be successful.

Alexandra Darling

Year 3 BSc Hons Zoology (19)
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Role: Team Leader

Alexandra  is currently a second year Zoology student. She has previous experience in organization and fundraising from a past expedition to Ghana in 2014. Alexandra has participated in data collection for wildlife species on the coastlines of East Lothian, giving her insight into effective information gathering and processing. She has experience in project design and reporting thanks to multiple academic endeavours. Alexandra is a positive and active young woman, who works easily in a team. She looks forward to developing her field skills in Guyana, which will contribute significantly to her future career as a zoologist.

Susanna Findlay

Year 3 BSc Hons Zoology (21)

Role: Amphibian research

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Before coming to university Susanna volunteered with a local NGO in Cajamarca, Peru as part of a ‘Tearfund’ project, working with women and children in rural communities. It is from this experience that she came to understand the value of local relationships and is looking forward to working alongside the local rangers and conservationists in Guyana. In the summer after her first year of study, Susanna spent 3 months carrying out fieldwork in Tobago as part of another one of the University of Glasgow’s Exploration society expeditions. These weeks of research and conservation work gave her great practical experience which sparked even greater interest in tropical ecology and fieldwork. She worked alongside the local NGO NEST (North East Sea Turtles), patrolling the beaches from 8pm-3am and collecting data when the turtles came up to nest. These past experiences have equipped her with skills in teamwork, fundraising and work in the field having worked on diversity and abundance studies in bats and frogs. Susanna is enthusiastic about the opportunity of conducting amphibian research in Guyana’s pristine rainforest.

Megan Oversby

Year 2 BSc Hons Zoology (20)

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Megan is a second year BSc student studying Zoology and this will be her first expedition with Glasgow University. She has experience in amphibian processing, data collection and in-field lab work during a research expedition to the Cusuco National Park cloud forest of Honduras in 2016, and looks forward to returning to a similar climate and environment to further experience and investigate the pristine and wildly biodiverse National Park. Megan has a particular interest in following up on PCR work she carried out on amphibians in Honduras, as part of a study into the spread of Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis, the amphibian Chytrid Fungus, and its impacts on the endemic frog populations of the cloud forests of Cusuco. Megan was recently involved in an internship at CORESea on Koh Phangan, Thailand; a coral research station where she investigated the biodiversity of marine hotspots as well as the extent of coral reef bleaching and industrial damage in the Gulf. Her experiences in Thailand and Honduras prepared her for the challenging living conditions on the expedition, and receiving the Rotary Youth Leadership Award in 2014 demonstrates her dedication to the team and resourcefulness in challenging scenarios.

Matthew Cameron

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Year 2 BSc Hons Zoology (20)

Matthew is a 2nd year zoology student with previous experience with bird and mammal identification, as well as animal handling skills. He is an effective communicator, and is hardworking and practical. Matthew has been involved in survey projects of amphibians and so far his travels have taken him on wildlife inspired trips around Europe, Indonesia and North Africa. He is a suitably qualified and enthusiastic member on this expedition, which will be his first opportunity to visit the new world.

Jamo Rae-Smith

Year 1 BEng Civil Engineering with Architecture (19)

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Jamo is a first year BEng student studying Civil Engineering with Architecture and this will be his first expedition with Glasgow University. Having studied Biology and other scientific subjects for the French Baccalaureate (OIB), he has various skills such as punctual measurement taking, rock sampling. In the year after finishing the Baccalaureate, he travelled in the pacific on-board a containership all while working on a daily basis on it. Used to remote environments and having grown up in rural South of France he is a practical person when it comes to problem solving. Being observant and good at sketching he can contribute to the team by sharing ideas. Jamo has a passion for the natural world and conservation, and the opportunity to work in the remote Guyanese rainforest will greatly widen his knowledge and skills of zoology and zoological practices and field work.

Veronica Cowley

Year 1 BSc Hons Zoology (19)

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Veronica is a first year BSc Zoology student from Cornwall. This will be her first scientific expedition and she is very excited to learn and gain practical skills in the remote south Guyanese rainforest of the Kanuku Mountains National Park. Veronica has previous experience in fundraising for team projects, as well as effective team working skills, acquired when she took part in the Young Enterprise competition.

 

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