Monday, October 4, 2010

NHK Interview

The NHK (Japanese equivalent to the BBC) is touring the refuge this weekend filming different aspects of the Whooping Crane Reintroduction Project. They ran into me Saturday morning and asked to do an interview with me on Sunday!

Me? little old me?

They wanted to film me tracking cranes in the van, ask me some questions about the project, and maybe we could find some cranes at the end so they could film them.

Sunday morning I went out tracking, and found a pair that was not even 50 meters from the road (so close you could almost touch them). When I met up with them, they were super excited about the prospect of seeing a pair that was so close. The guys were all super cool and they asked a lot of questions about tracking. I really enjoyed my morning with them. They only asked one hard question:

Why is this data I'm collecting important for whooping crane conservation? Well, I go out and gather data on crane locations. It seems to be most important during the spring and fall migrations (and right before migration, so we know when it starts). It's also very important during breeding season so we know where there might be successful nests. But I'm not really sure why it's important to collect crane location data during mid summer.. maybe so we could possibly do some behavioral analyses in the future. I'm of the general opinion that it's a good thing to collect and publish as much data as possible. If you've got the man power, why not put out as much information as you can? It's hard to convince others of this point of view, though. Many people like to hoard information. I understand its important to keep sensitive information close, like specific locations of birds at the current moment (we may not want any person to know where to find a crane, just in case they had dishonorable intentions).

Anyway, the interview was unnerving, but a really wonderful experience. I think I need more practice at speaking in front of the camera.

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