“Pen and Camera are weapons against oblivion, they can create awareness for that which may soon be lost forever.” -George Schaller
I’m taking up those weapons and helping in the fight for our planet and all of the fascinating species that inhabit it. I write stories that teach and entertain, create photographs that inspire. I believe education empowers change.
I am an ecologist, marine biologist, photographer and a writer. I am also an avid traveler, outdoors women, adventurer, gardener, environmentalist, and amateur potter. I am forever fascinated by the complexities of animal behavior, struck by the imperfect perfection of evolution and enthralled by the breath taking beauty of our natural world.
I have always held a fascination with how things work, particularly how things in nature work. As a child my favorite question was “Why?” My parents, bless them, always tried to give me an answer–even after the 10th “why?” I think they kept answering because I genuinely wanted to know and would listen to and consider each answer.
This curiosity and fascination with nature led me to science and to biology, the forefront of discovering the “whys” of the natural world. I have a Bachelors and a Masters degree in Ecology, Evolution and Marine Biology. Everywhere I go, I am quizzically examining the ecology in the area, constantly learning about new systems and animals. I am particularly interested in how better understanding of ecological systems and their balances can help us improve conservation and management efforts. On a personal, more nerdy level, I am totally fascinated by animal behavior, especially elaborate mating systems and rituals.
Somewhere along the way on the fast track to a life in academic research, I realized that the thing that inspired me even more than conducting my own discoveries, was sharing my knowledge with others. So much great science wasn’t reaching the public in ways that they could understand and be excited about. I felt compelled to work translating science into digestible pieces that could grab anyone’s interest while keeping the strict code of scientific accuracy. I do this when I teach classes and I do it in my writing.
Almost without fail when I tell people, “I am an biologist” they reply “I wanted to be a biologist when I was a kid/ in college etc.” We have this inherent interest in our natural world and how it works. Through my writing I try to capitalize on this natural fascination and educate my readers by weaving biology and natural history elements into my travel stories. I also write the stories behind the science to make them fun to read, educational pieces about current research expeditions and discoveries. I am passionate about our natural world and increasing public understanding about it. In the spring of 2015, I started my first book, a non-fiction travel style journey through the public lands in the American West that delves into the natural history and conservation issues facing these places.
I am happiest either diving underwater, walking on a deserted beach or backpacking in the mountains. I am constantly trying new ways of lightening my environmental footprint, reducing and reusing however I can, and growing as much of my own food as possible. I am deeply passionate about decreasing our adverse impacts on the planet by increasing the sustainability of our lifestyles and believe that we as individuals have great power in doing this by making changes in our personal lives.
If you have any questions or thoughts please feel free to email me at SierraJoyStevensMcGeever@gmail.com or leave them in the comments section.