Monday, 22 February 2016
Hello I am Robin So and I am now the current research intern of the HKDCS. I am majoring in marine biology at Dalhousie University Halifax Nova Scotia Canada. Being able to join a team of experts in marine mammal conservation is really a dream come true for me. I have always wondered if I would ever be able to venture out to sea and observe marine mammals in their natural environment. So far, being an intern with HKDCS has been exciting and interesting and I strive to continue improving my skills and knowledge in this field.
Taison, Leon, Viena, Vincent, and Dr. Hung himself are very outgoing and amusing people and I quickly felt comfortable working with them. My predecessor, Stephanie, was extremely helpful because she gave me tips on being an intern and made sure I felt right at home with the rest of the team. (Suggesting we all go out on a biking adventure 🙂 )
Construction of the Zhuhai Macau Bridge
As an intern I had expectations of obtaining a greater understanding of the social-political climate regarding the conservation of the Chinese White Dolphin. I wanted to see the different pieces of the conservation puzzle, and observe the Hong Kong government’s role in environmental conservation. This is because my university studies had primarily been focused on researching biology but less on applying it for environmental activism. With every boat, and land – based survey I took part in I obtained more and more insight on the factors that are harming the dolphins and the different variables that will be greatly affected by the onset of large-scale government projects. Currently, the construction of the Hong Kong Zhuhai Macau Bridge is impacting the Chinese White dolphin in North East, North West and West Lantau Island. Moreover, the increase in boat traffic in Hong Kong waters is yet another major disturbance to the local cetaceans.
A dolphin trying to get an easy meal from the nets of fishermen
Besides being able to see the harsh physical and environmental conditions, which Hong Kong cetaceans live in, I went on many side trips “adventures” which included going to two different elementary schools and observing my colleagues give presentations on cetaceans, accessing a situation which involved a pan-tropical spotted dolphin being trapped in a local yacht club marina, and listening to government workers debrief a environmental impact assessment.
This internship has so far been dynamic: filled with challenges, surpirses, and a lot of fun and good laughs. Until next time!
To celebrate our successes on the field we often feast a lot from the tributes offered by past interns. As befitting of Hong Kongers, each member of the team has a great passion for food, and sharing it makes it all the better!
Posted by Robin So