Ensenada, Baja California
¡Bienvenidos! Summer is the field season for many biologists; I think I speak for a lot of us when I say it’s equally exhilarating and exhausting. Having three geographically disparate locations for my thesis has created unanticipated challenges, but I wouldn’t change it for the world. And to be perfectly honest, I have no shame in saying that Baja California is by far my favorite place to work. Never have I felt more welcomed into a community than by the MexCal dive and research team. Dr. Rodrigo Beas has facilitated a vital component of my thesis, and the army of undergraduates in MexCal have proven to be invaluable in the field.
After several trips to Baja, Dr. Beas finally joined me in the field. We also had the privilege of diving with Dr. Julio Lorda, another of the MexCal PIs. In return, my assistante numero uno, Patrick, and I were invited to participate in a series of MexCal “lightning talks”. With next to no warning, Patrick and I had to put together five-minute presentations detailing our projects and future plans. There’s nothing like working under a tight deadline! We were thoroughly impressed we the caliber of the undergraduates’ projects, and their level of autonomy. From modeling climate change scenarios to understanding multi-trophic aquaculture dynamics, it’s inspiring to watch these rising scientist-stars.
Sadly, my days of diving in Baja for my Master’s degree are numbered. But, I have a sneaking suspicion that my research in Baja is only just beginning.
¡Eso es todo por ahora!
-Baron von Urchin
Pike Spector is currently a Research Operations Specialist with Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary