haczech

Joined: May 29, 2018 Last Active: Aug 10, 2020

I'm a latecomer to iNat (2018), but I've been taking pictures for years, hoarding them on my computer, and wondering what to do with them. I started taking pictures as a way to record what I'd seen and also as an identification tool. iNaturalist has turned out to be a great way for me to share these observations while also helping to contribute to biodiversity, distribution, and behavioral data. It's also a great place to learn about unfamiliar taxa and explore the world.

My first loves were amphibians and reptiles, birds, and butterflies and moths, but really it's all amazing to me. I'm never disappointed and am continuously surprised by the complexity of the natural world. I owe a lot to my late parents, who shared and encouraged my interest in nature.

I've spent most of my adult life working behind the scenes as a boots-on-the-ground field technician in NY, MA, GA, AL, and TN, and have volunteered with projects in ME, MD, and NC. I've worked with multiple species of amphibians and reptiles like freshwater turtles and tortoises (10 species including the triumvirate of spotted, bog, and wood turtles, and spiny softshells, eastern box turtles, and gopher tortoises) and Ambystomatid salamanders and other pool-breeding amphibians. Non-herps have include tree swallows, blue birds, and herons, shrews and other small mammals, freshwater fish, freshwater mussels, benthic macroinvertebrates, damsel and dragonflies, wild pigs, and trees and shrubs. My favorite places include bogs, fens, vernal pools, glades, and longleaf pine-wiregrass savanna.

I've been working in North Alabama for the last 12 years as a wildlife research associate and as part of a prescribed fire team, the AAMU Fire Dawgs. I mostly work in the Bankhead National Forest, but occasionally in other areas of North Alabama including the Paint Rock Valley and the Cumberland Plateau. A lot of my job focuses on exposing students to hands-on research, field work, and the natural world.

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