Rebecca grew up surrounded by animals, so it was almost inevitable that she would develop a love of the environment and all its inhabitants. From having ducks, rabbits, chickens, dogs and horses as pets, to taking multiple family trips every year to different national parks across southern Africa, she became curious about different aspects of nature. She completed her BSc in Marine Biology and Applied Biology at UCT followed by a BSc honours in Biological Sciences. Her honours dissertation looked at resource use and resource availability for giraffes in Mokala; a relatively new national park in the Northern Cape; to better understand what conservation measures may be needed in light of the recent uplisting of giraffe to Vulnerable in the IUCN red list. Rebecca started volunteering at the Two Oceans Aquarium in Cape Town at age 16 while still in high school and now works with the penguins and helping to educate the public on general issues surrounding the health of our oceans and their creatures. She has also completed two volunteering stints with WildlifeACT in Kwa-Zulu Natal doing monitoring work of priority species such as rhino, wild dog, lion, leopard and cheetah. Rebecca hopes to make a practical contribution to conservation in southern Africa, and is especially interested in looking for mitigation strategies for cases of human-wildlife conflict. In her spare time, Rebecca enjoys reading and spending time with her family, dogs and horses.
The urban ecology of crowned eagles. (Supervisors: Arjun Amar, Petra Sumasgutner, Shane McPherson)