The Peregrine Fund's International Women in Science Week Celebration is in partnership with the Idaho Environmental Education Association (IdEEA).
Hi! My name is Marta Curti and I'm a biologist and environmental educator at The Peregrine Fund. I work as a field biologist and coordinate the environmental education program for our Ridgway's Hawk Conservation project in Dominican Republic. In the picture above, I'm climbing a tree to reach a Harpy Eagle's nest in Panama.
My work matters because wildlife matters, wild places matter, and people matter. I believe that this work gives me the opportunity to affect the world in a positive way. I love the moment when people first hear about the Ridgway's Hawk and begin to understand why it is such an important species for the island of Hispaniola.
I never thought I would ever work as a biologist. I didn't like math or science in school and, though I loved animals, I grew up in a large city and didn't have much outdoor experience. But after I graduated from college, I took a trip around the United States, visiting national parks and forests. I spent the summer hiking, camping, and backpacking. That trip changed my life. I fell in love with nature. Because my background was in writing and education, I was able to get a volunteer position with the National Park Service, and then with the USFWS, as an environmental educator. I spent all my free time volunteering to help the biologists. I conducted roadkill surveys, helped feed Mexican Gray Wolves that were part of a captive-breeding program, and eventually was given my own projects to lead. That was over 20 years ago!
Being a biologist can involve a lot of long hours in the field, and sometimes, many of those hours are spent waiting for something to happen! Other times, your day is spent hiking non-stop. If you want to become a biologist and can enjoy just being in nature and find excitement and adventure in events both big and small, you will love working as a field biologist!
Thank you to our Women in Science Celebration collaborators at the Idaho Environmental Education Association! Learn more about how they're inspiring the next generation of conservationists.