Thanks to everyone who voted for me. I really enjoyed chatting with you and answering you questions :)
University College Dublin 2007-2011
Honors degree in Botany and Zoology
Wicklow County Council, The Marine Institute, UCD, EPA
Marine Biology Researcher in UCD, and an instructor at the Centre for Talented Youth Ireland.
University College Dublin
Favourite thing to do in science: I love animals- so it has to be studying them in their natural habitat. Through research I find out about how they live and how they react to changes in their environment
I am investigating if climate change will affect the plants and animals that live along Irelands coastlines.
A change in temperature, rainfall or number of storms may affect marine life. For example, increased rainfall may wash pollutants from the land into the sea. These pollutants can range from nasty chemicals to bird poop! My research looks at how seaweeds and animals such as crabs, mussels and sea squirts will react to these pollutants and how we can help to protect them. Healthy marine life is so important to humans. The oceans provide us with over half of the oxygen we breathe, a source of food and even supply us with an important ingredient used in ice cream!
My Typical Day
Most days I begin at 8am (the early bird catches the worm!). In the morning I could be working outdoors on a beach, in the lab sorting through little critters or writing about my work on the laptop. Usually in the afternoons and on Saturdays I teach primary school and university students all about marine biology
What I'd do with the money
I have two ideas! Either set up a marine biology website that is full of amazing facts and pictures, and a place for kids to share their photos and experiences with sea life. Or my second idea is to buy models of animals like jellyfish and sharks to show kids I teach a close up view of the bodies of these sea creatures.
How would you describe yourself in 3 words?
Curious, ambitious and friendly
Who is your favourite singer or band?
What's your favourite food?
Lasagne and chips. Yum!
What is the most fun thing you've done?
It has to be my holiday to Disney world and Universal Studios in Florida, I had the best time!
What did you want to be after you left school?
A zoo keeper
Were you ever in trouble at school?
I used to get ‘black marks’ for being late, and wearing my sports hoodie in class, but other than that I was well behaved.
What was your favourite subject at school?
What's the best thing you've done as a scientist?
I just love working outside. Many times I have been concentrating on taking a measurement, or writing a note down, and all of a sudden I hear a splash. It could be from a seal, a dogfish, or even a dolphin. I love the excitement of not knowing what you are going to see at the sea!
What or who inspired you to become a scientist?
My pets. I wanted them all to talk to me!! Sadly, this never happened. So I decided studying animals and getting to know more about their behaviours, anatomy and lifestyle was the next best thing.
If you weren't a scientist, what would you be?
If you had 3 wishes for yourself what would they be? - be honest!
To have an unlimited credit card to buy whatever I wanted, to take all my family and friends on a trip around the world, and for them all to be healthy.
Tell us a joke.
Why don’t oysters give to charity?… Because they’re shellfish :)
This is my dog Minnie. She is a Bichon Frise. Although she looks like a puppy, she’s actually 9 years old.
These are pictures from my work in Lough Hyne, Co.Cork. This is a sea lake. We snorkelled in November and it was FREEZING! We had to wear two wet suits. We set up underwater cages with crabs and other animals to see what they would eat if they were infected with a parasite.
This is a green shore crab, and these are found all over Ireland in shallow seawater. This one is infected with a parasite. The clue is this orange gooey bulge coming out of his abdomen.
These photos are of dolphins I saw in West Cork. The dolphins swam alongside the boat for about then minutes and it was so exciting!
This is a starfish I found washed ashore after a storm. He’s big!