A Cape Cod Goodbye

Brittany Arendse
15 March 2016

Sitting at home on the cold and wintery peninsula of Cape Cod Massachusetts, I wish I could be back on the warm sunny beach of Nature’s Valley, taking a swim in the lagoon. My time with Nature’s Valley Trust had me constantly wondering why I was ever planning on leaving! I came to NVT to be part of the white-fronted plover research team. Having worked with nesting shorebirds back in the U.S, it was a great learning experience to work with people from all over the globe and learn about different conservation methods.  

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Alex, all smiles as she handles a tiny White-fronted Plover chick

While most of my days were filled with adorable plovers and their chicks, one of the best parts about my internship with NVT was the variety of experiences I got to have. You may wake up on a normal Tuesday morning, and by 10am find out you are going to participate in the necropsy of an Orca whale! Or get to drive around beautiful rolling hills looking for perched raptors to catch and ring. Getting to release a freshly rung Steppe buzzard was one of the coolest things I have ever done!  

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Alex releasing her very first Jackal Buzzard

Experiences like this always left me feeling as though I was a small contributor to the amazing conservation community in the area, a community that NVT is such a big part of.  I’m very happy to have been involved with this amazing organization (and to know that I caused no harm to anyone or anything while driving a manual car on the left side of the road for the first time in my life!). While I may not miss the melodic calls of the hadedas waking me up in the morning, I do miss all great people I got to work with back in Nature’s Valley.  Thank you to everyone!

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Alex handling a African Black Oystercatcher