\#MORails 2016 (all time) by the numbers

2016 numbers followed by (all time project total)

70 nights (360)
10 sites (13)
30 treatment wetlands (71)
~10,500 miles driven in the truck (~75000)
~1500 miles driven on ATV (~13000)
180 hours of surveying (1019)
228 surveys (1149)
1803 Sora (7905)
17 Virginia Rails (97)
13 Yellow Rails (63)
88 rails captured (310)
16 oil changes (who on earth knows)
4 flat tires (~18 including ATVs)
7 seasons of Parks and Recreation watched (also breaking bad, house of carsds, orange is the new black, big bang theory, the office)
1000 cups of tea and coffee consumed (who on earth knows)
1 complete listen to the entire Harry Potter Series on audiobook (many others across the years)
5 pans of brownies (many, so so many)

0 lost wallets (3)
0 times dunking ATVs into way to deep water (2)
0 King Rails (4)
0 Black Rails (0)

dozens of hours laying under ATVs in various parking lots across Missouri trying to figure out what on earth was wrong (many many dozens)

dozens of times refreshing my weather app trying to figure out if we should driev 1+ hour to our site only to not be able to work in the lightning

Another amazing year, in large part because of my awesome technician Justin Lehman, who was, as always, a hard worker and good travel companion. Multiple times I said ‘oh wouldn’t it be cool if this happened, but the numbers suggest it wont happen’ and then Justin made it happen. He is also full of great ideas for how to make things more efficient, and has the pacience to explain them to me five times before I finally understand.

I have been exceptionally lucky to have amazing, dedicated, fun, forgiving, hard working and outstanding technicians each year on my project. Three of them were crazy enough to work for me two years, but I love them all for the blood sweat and tears they poured into my research and for the wonderful friends they have all become. I’m not the easiest person to work for/with at times, especially early on in my project when I had NO IDEA what was going on. Between my forgetfullness and the fact that my project is a giant dumpster fire of chaos, but they all came out smiling, probably because I stuffed them full of brownies.

My deepest thanks also goes out to the many managers, biologists, bio techs and other staff of the state and federal properties I work on, they have shared their love and knowledge of wetlands with me, and helped me fix ATVs, trailers, and many other issues over the years. They know their properties in a deep way that I was only able to scrape the surface of in five years, their love for their jobs and their excitement to learn more about the wetlands they manage was a great inspiration to me.

Now to finish writing up all of this madness. #PHD2017 !!

Written on October 30, 2016