Karla Vargas, a conservation geneticist and PhD candidate in SNRE with Dr. Melanie Culver, was recently featured in a YouTube Channel Series, 'Women in Science' hosted by Dr. Jennifer Verdolin. Karla studies the genetic diversity of the Masked Bobwhite, an endangered subspecies of the Northern Bobwhite native to southern Arizona and Sonora. She hopes to understand where the closest living relatives of the Masked Bobwhite occurs, how genetically diverse the subspecies is compared to other subspecies, and evaluate the loss of genetic diversity in the captive population. Her work contributes toward a larger conservation project seeking to establish self-sustaining populations in the wild, informing management decisions regarding reintroduction and translocation. Over 1000 birds have been relased at the Buenos Aires National Wildlife Refuge in the past couple of years, many of which were identified the following year with thriving families. Watch the full video (here) to see the heartwarming release of a family of Masked Bobwhites back into their natural habitat.
YouTube is the world?s largest video hosting website and is an underutilized platform for promoting STEM research and educating the public. Research shows that science communication videos on YouTube that feature a consistent user are more popular. This YouTube series leverages multi-media and social media platforms to provide women in STEM fields the opportunity to share their work, broaden their impact, and raise their profiles in the public sector. Dr. Jennifer Verdolin, an Assistant Professor in SNRE and an experienced science communicator, developed the Women in Science series to highlight the advances and contribution women are making to STEM fields and gives them a place to promote themselves, their research, and inspire others to follow in their footsteps. By leveraging multi-media and social media platforms women in STEM fields have the opportunity to share their work, broaden their impact, and raise their profiles in the public sector. Access the YouTube ?Women in Science? series and more of Dr. Verdolin?s videos here.