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Title:Pathways through non-linear passions
Author(s):Nelson, Scott Brent
Subject(s):Natural Resources and Environmental Sciences
Abstract:We spend our lives finding our place in the world, backing up as our interests shift yet frequently returning to places we have been before to rediscover old passions. So it is with research as well, as we uncover the questions that call to us. These robber flies (Asilidae) two voracious predators captured in an uncharacteristically intimate moment speak to how my current research connects me with my past. I photographed these creatures trekking through the tallgrass prairies of Iowa where I study the reproductive ecology of songbirds. I came to study birds by a roundabout path. Fascinated with mammals as a child, I became enthralled with single-celled organisms until I discovered ecology and threw myself into insect-plant interactions. It was a fascinating realm of intricate behavior. Eventually that urge from childhood called me again, pressing me fervently towards vertebrates. In birds I found a new world of endless diversity. Every summer morning the prairie awakens to the insistent orchestra of birds. But as the day wears on, the insects stir and create as much activity low to the ground as the birds up high, and I am reminded that we carry our past passions with us into the present.
Issue Date:2016-04
Rights Information:Copyright 2016 Scott Brent Nelson
Date Available in IDEALS:2016-04-15

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