Nicole Guido (BS '12)
Upon graduating from Rutgers in 2012, I have cultivated an immense regard for avian conservation studies. In the past few years, I have been involved with several organizations that have strengthened my practice in conducting research.
I was a field technician for two seasons under Cornell University’s Biodiversity Monitoring Program in the Hudson Valley of New York. We worked with a variety of taxa found in the Valley which called for the use of many interesting field techniques including sampling vernal pools, surveying for adults salamanders, monitoring songbird nests, setting up hair snares with camera traps, radio-tracking wood turtles, and identifying macroinvertebrates to aid in stream sampling. We performed these surveys in order to contribute data to a habitat connectivity model. This model intends to identify areas of high biodiversity as human development rises in the area. This position spurred my interest in studying ecology on the landscape scale.
Ready for some traveling after time spent in the Valley, I worked for the USGS on a food web ecology study in Hawaii Volcanoes National Park. This project focused on the effects of invasive mammals and insects on a native bird, the Hawaii Elepaio.
In between breeding seasons, I have spent time in tropical environments including Panama, Costa Rica, and Belize to learn more about banding birds and aiding with various other fieldwork.
In this past year, I was the crew leader of a grassland bird demography study in Montana under Bird Conservancy of the Rockies. This project inspired me to continue my work in the grasslands where I will pursue my Masters Degree at the University of Maine starting next fall. Thus far, I will focus on the nesting ecology of grassland Ammodramus sparrows. I will be using UAVs (drones) to produce imagery, and, to collect various other data with hopes of identifying suitable breeding habitats over a larger scale. Before dedicating the next couple of years to these lovely sparrows, I will spend a season as a technician in Borneo working on a project that researches the life history strategies of birds breeding on Mount Kinabalu.
Attending Rutgers, and choosing a B.S. in Ecology, Evolution, and Natural Resources, truly fostered a world of possibilities for me. My professors were a great inspiration and had compelled me not only to find my career path, but also, to embrace the lifestyle of an ecologist.