24th June 2019 – Lucy Taylor, Save the Elephants/ University of Oxford

Lucy TaylorHi everyone! My name is Dr Lucy Taylor (@LucyATaylor) and I am a Postdoctoral Researcher with Save the Elephants and the University of Oxford. My current research focuses on African savannah elephant behaviour and movement ecology. In particular, I use GPS tracking data from elephants in northern Kenya to investigate whether elephants change their movement patterns in relation to life history events, such as giving birth, and to humans.

Alongside my research, I am also passionate about student support and development, particularly of graduate students. My route through the education system was not exactly linear. After dropping out of A-levels (high school), I took a vocational qualification at an agricultural college, followed by BSc (hons) Animal Science and an MSc by Research. I then somehow got into the University of Oxford for a DPhil (PhD), which I completed in 2018. My thesis investigated the modulations in movement by homing pigeons and African savannah elephants. How are homing pigeons and elephants connected, you may ask. Well – I started my PhD studying pigeons, then I became allergic to them and had to switch subject. Fortunately, I was lucky enough to switch to studying elephants in collaboration with Save the Elephants. It was not the easiest journey, but I’ve learnt a huge amount in the process and I really enjoy both sharing the tips I have learned and supporting other students through the PhD process.

I’m excited to join you @biotweeps for the week and look forward to talking to you all about elephants, movement ecology, and the highs and lows of academic life!

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