Morgen Harvey ’16
Grazing Regimes and Impacts on Animal Health, Kenya
This summer I traveled to Kenya to work as an intern for a grazing project headed by Professor Rubenstein. This study focused on the effects of different grazing patterns on cattle health and vegetation. My job consisted mostly of fieldwork; I collected plant transect data in previously established plots of investigation and observed and recorded cattle and sheep bite step patterns and behavior. I learned about the current grazing issues in the Laikipia district in Kenya as well as the local struggles over grazing rights and effective grazing techniques. We experimented with a planned grazing pattern instead of traditional grazing to see if this would help prevent overgrazing and increase cattle health and vegetation health. I learned not only about the species of grass and the particular climate we were studying , but also about all aspects of collecting data and conducting research. This was an incredible learning experience that immersed me in a diverse and rich culture which I hope to eventually revisit. As a student interested in pursuing veterinary medicine, this internship helped me confirm my interest in studying large animals.
Biodiversity and Conservation
Mpala Research Centre, Kenya
Daniel Rubenstein, Professor, Ecology and Evolutionary Biology