Antsing with myself: thanks and farewell Terry McGlynn

Biologist Terry McGlynn (@hormiga) joined RealScientists back at the end of October, bringing with him a love of ants and tropical ecology.

Turns out that ants have carefully crafted their public persona of being the hardworking, weightlifting powerhouses of the insect world but it is ALL A LIE

Terry also covered gender equity and harassment issues in science and academia

And the some of the differences in teaching and conducting research at a non-research intensive university, which is a major focus of his blog.

We asked Terry about how he went curating RealScientists, so here are his thoughts:


In general terms, how did you find your week as a curator?

In one word, it was exhausting. I had a specific agenda of specific things I wanted to discuss, and handling those topics adequately took a huge amount of time.

It can be a shock talking to so many. Did you find the sudden rush of interactions (good and bad) daunting?

I didn’t find it was so bad. Many more people follow this account than my own, but I’ve been involved in other conversations that have garnered attention so I was mostly prepared for it. I note that I think it would have been really different if I was a woman, and suspect the topics I was addressing would generate a substantial amount of abuse. But I didn’t get much of it at all.

What were the highlights? Were there any lowlights?

It was nice to see that a bunch of people were pointing to what I was saying, helping spread word about issues that matter to me (and, I hope, many other scientists).

Is there anything you wanted to get out of / do on the RS account that you didn’t manage to fit in?

I had pretty much maxed out by Thursday night, and I had saved Friday for an important topic but was both exhausted and also had neglected to many other things that I had to get to on that day before the week ended.

Did you have a plan? If so, did you stick to it?

I had a topic per day, and I stuck to it, though it petered out on Friday.

Do you have any tips or advice for future RS curators?

In my experience, it wasn’t a good idea to take this on during a week when I committed to other things. I was hosting a visiting speaker who was staying with me, and my spouse was out of town, and focusing on the twitter account definitely made it a difficult week for me.

What other people or accounts should people follow if they enjoyed your tweets this week?

Small Pond Science, Hope Jahren, Meg Duffy, Amy Parachnowitch, Rob Dunn, Catherine Scott, Alex Wild, Alex Bond, Dezene Huber, Emilio Bruna, Not Just Scientists podcast

Thanks once again Terry from all of us here at RealScientists HQ. If you missed anything from hiss week, the tweets are all collated at the following link.


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