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Fraser heads to the Honduran Rainforest

I have been accepted for a place as a research assistant on an expedition to the Honduran cloud rainforest this summer (which will further my aim of studying biological or environmental sciences at University).

The project is a biodiversity research project based in the cloud rainforest in Cusuco National Park, listed as one of the top 50 most irreplaceable biodiversity sites in the world. After training in jungle survival and forest ecology on arrival, I will assist in such works as measuring forest structure and carbon content, light trapping for moths and jewel scarab beetles, bird point counts and mist netting surveys, determining chytrid infection rates within amphibians, spotlight surveys for amphibian distribution, visual transect surveys for bats, small mammal trapping and camera trapping for larger mammals. However, I think I am most excited to see the howler and spider monkeys!

I have always seen myself in the future working within a rainforest or a coral reef doing research and conservation rather than being locked behind a desk, so this opportunity really means a lot to me as this is my first chance to travel to somewhere outside Europe, and excitingly, my first chance to actually work in a rainforest experiencing what I want to do as a career after university.

One of the biggest hurdles of this project so far has been the fundraising, for which I need to fundraise to cover: the costs of my place on the expedition, the food, lodgings, the flights and the internal travel costs. I am aiming to raise around £2,500. So far I have run a 10k and run a quiz, but the largest help towards this was a £500 grant from the Captain Scott Society which I won. I am also planning on applying to the Thompson Travel Grant from our school.

Fraser (Lower Sixth)