Episode 8 | Invasive insects in Antarctica | Jes Bartlett

Episode 8 | Invasive insects in Antarctica | Jes Bartlett

Brrrrrrr! Winter is here so naturally we thought we’d talk about working in cold environments this week!

Jes Bartlett is a polar ecologist based at the University of Birmingham, where she is investigating an invasive species of midge in Antarctica. She’s interested in how these little critters survive in extreme polar conditions and the impact that they make on the ecosystems in the region. Jes describes the unique challenges you face when working on remote islands in Antarctica. Have a listen to find out about the beautiful and not so beautiful creatures she came in contact with and what it is like to toboggan down a glacier!


Read more about Jes’ journey through her research career on her People page, and make sure to go to the Gallery page to see some incredible photos from her work in Antarctica.


Episode 7 | Mountain building in Bhutan | Eleni Wood & Stacy Phillips

Episode 7 | Mountain building in Bhutan | Eleni Wood & Stacy Phillips

We’ve turned Fieldwork Diaries on its head for Episode 7 – it’s the creators of the podcast being interviewed this week!

Matt Kent, star of Episode 1 has been drafted in as our guest host and he is quizzing Eleni Wood and Stacy Phillips, the team behind this very podcast. We both work on the geology of the Himalaya, and were out on fieldwork together this year in Bhutan where we were investigating mountain building processes. We chat to Matt about the amazing people we met, the wildlife we encountered, and the food we ate whilst out in Bhutan. Telling stories is why we created this podcast, so we hope you enjoy our ones!


To read more about how we got into geology and our careers so far then head over to our People pages – find Eleni’s here, and Stacy’s here. If you want to see photos from our trip to Bhutan then you can find them over on the Gallery page.


Episode 6 | Chimpanzees in Uganda | David Pettifer

Episode 6 | Chimpanzees in Uganda | David Pettifer

Back to earth for Episode 6 and we’re learning about some of our near relatives in the animal kingdom.

David Pettifer is a primatologist and behavioural ecologist at the University of Birmingham where he studies how chimpanzees age and how ageing affects their musculoskeletal health. As part of his PhD research, he recently headed out to the wilderness in Uganda to observe wild chimps and their behaviour. Whilst faced with the challenge of trying to find an elusive group of the primates, David was treated to a series of close encounters with Ugandan forest fauna both big and small. Make yourself a brew, get comfy and have a listen to this episode to find out all about the incredible animals he got up close and personal with!


Find out more about David and how he got into this field of research by going to his People page, and see the amazing photos that he took during his fieldwork on the Gallery page.


Episode 5 | Glaciers on Mars | Frances Butcher

Episode 5 | Glaciers on Mars | Frances Butcher

We are up to Episode 5 now and we’re taking things inter-planetary!

Frances Butcher is a PhD researcher at the Open University who combines her love of astronomy and glaciology to study glaciers on Mars! But how can you study glaciers on Mars if you can’t go on fieldwork there? Listen to the episode to find out the ingenious ways in which planetary scientists can study these space glaciers by using the resources available to them here on Earth.


You can go and read Frances’ bio on her People page, and see photos of her fieldwork on the Gallery page.


Episode 4 | Reasons to love fieldwork

Episode 4 | Reasons to love fieldwork

We caught up with PhD students at the 2017 CENTA conference to find out why they love fieldwork!

Fieldwork involves putting on your big boots, escaping the office and exploring new environments. It can take you everywhere from limestone grasslands in beautiful Oxfordshire to the remote Antarctic circle, all in the name of science. We headed to the 2017 CENTA conference, to ask the PhD researchers who carry out this cutting-edge science to explain why they love their fieldwork so much. Listen to find out more!

This episode features the voices of Tessa Driessen & Richard Mason from Loughborough University; Melanie Stone from the Open University; Jon MacKay, David Pettifer, Doris Wendt & Jesamine Bartlett from the University of Birmingham. Follow the links to find out more about their research on twitter!

Tessa Driessen investigating crater lakes in western Uganda

Episode 3 | High pressure Himalayan geology in India | Anna Bidgood

Episode 3 | High pressure Himalayan geology in India | Anna Bidgood

Episode 3 is out and this week we’re headed into the mountains!

Geologist Anna Bidgood, from the University of Oxford, takes us on a journey to the top of the highest mountain range on the planet: the Indian Himalaya. Anna works in Ladakh, a region where the air is thin, the wildlife is rare and interesting commuters pass through her field area. She is investigating how the edge of India was forced deep beneath the Asian continent in a subduction zone, formed when the two continents collided. The clues she needs to understand this geological history are encoded in the minerals of rocks that have been down to extreme depths, where high pressures transform them before they find their way back to the surface. Listen to hear all about her adventures!


Find out more about Anna on her People page, and head over to the Gallery page to see photos from her fieldwork travels.


Episode 2 | Volcanoes in Nicaragua | Kerry Reid

Episode 2 | Volcanoes in Nicaragua | Kerry Reid


We’ve got another episode for you, showcasing exciting research from extraordinary places!

Kerry Reid is a volcanologist and PhD student at The Open University. In this podcast, she describes her fieldwork in Central America, where she studies the volcanic degassing of Masaya Volcano in Nicaragua. Her work helps to predict future activity at the volcano, and is crucial to the health and livelihoods of local people in the path of the toxic cocktail of gases. Listen to hear all about her adventures, as she recounts the surprises and challenges of working on an active volcano!


You can find out more about Kerry’s research over on her People page (where you can also see amazing videos of lava lakes!), and be sure to head over to the Gallery page where you’ll find some cool photos from her fieldwork.


Episode 1 | Peatlands in Indonesia | Matt Kent

Episode 1 | Peatlands in Indonesia | Matt Kent

We are so excited to share our first episode with you!

Open University biogeochemist Matt Kent transports us to the peatlands of Indonesia, the land of the orang-utan, and a critical carbon-store. Matt studies tropical peatlands, investigating water-air greenhouse gas emissions and what dominates these processes. Listen to him cover everything from the joys of fieldwork, working with local field guides to deploy his “space hats”, to the fragility of peatland environments, which face the threat of devastating forest fires.


Check out Matt’s bio over on our People page, and have a look at some photos from his fieldwork on our Gallery page.


Episode 0 | An Introduction

Episode 0 | An Introduction

Hello there! You’ve found our brand-new podcast series. We’re very excited to share the interviews from Fieldwork Diaries with you. But, just before we get going, here’s a little taster of what’s to come.



Welcome!!

Welcome!!

Welcome to the Fieldwork Diaries website!!

This is the home of the Fieldwork Diaries podcast, a new podcast that brings you amazing stories from the field as told by the researchers that were there. We’ve got loads of information on our website so please have a look around. Find out who we are on our About Us page, learn more about the people featured on our podcast episodes, have a gander at some amazing fieldwork photos in our Gallery, and see where in the world people have been by looking at our Map page. Subscribe to our page in order to be the first to hear about new episodes. And don’t forget to get in contact with us by commenting or sending us a message. We’d love to hear from you so please let us know how we’re doing.

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