Morgen Harvey, 2016, English

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.