Jesse Miller (@Texosporium) is a landscape ecologist and postdoctoral researcher and joined RealScientists in October. Jesse spent a lot of time discussing fieldwork, and why wouldn’t you when your office looks like this?
It had been a long hot day in the field. Working in the White River Hills of southern MO, big open landscape of grassland and forests. pic.twitter.com/dHBKQD3HUR
— Morgan / @RealScientists (@realscientists) October 16, 2017
Here's an example of a dolomite glade–one of the old-growth grasslands I studied in the Ozarks. The flora is similar to tallgrass prairie. pic.twitter.com/xS7tLI6I68
— Morgan / @RealScientists (@realscientists) October 17, 2017
There was also some fantastic and timely discussion on fires and their effects on plant life
I know what you're really wondering: what about plants? Sadly, hot fire in systems not adapted to it may cause loss of wildflower diversity pic.twitter.com/lXKPga1p9u
— Morgan / @RealScientists (@realscientists) October 19, 2017
Jesse graciously accepted our offer to complete a post-curation survey, and his answers are below.
In general terms, how did you find your week as a curator?
I had a fantastic time curating. So much of being a scientist is working in private, and it was really fun to spend a week talking about everything I do with a lot of interested people.
It can be a shock talking to so many. Did you find the sudden rush of interactions (good and bad) daunting?
I didn’t realize quite how much time it would take, but once I got used to it it wasn’t daunting at all. Almost all the interactions were positive. It was kind of flattering to have so many people wanting to talk about lots of things I love (like lichens).
What were the highlights? Were there any lowlights?
It was interesting seeing what people were most excited about. People were really into lichens–I didn’t realize it would get that much of a rise. I figured fire would be the topic people were most interested in, but I think lichens drew even more conversation. Although, actually, my tweets about the problems with academic publishing got more attention than anything–I think that really struck a nerve.
Is there anything you wanted to get out of / do on the RS account that you didn’t manage to fit in?
I kind of imagined that in a whole week I could talk about EVERYTHING I DO AND THINK ABOUT SCIENCE but really, even spending a few hours a day on the computer you can’t get to everything. But I did cover all the big stuff I wanted to.
Did you have a plan? If so, did you stick to it?
Yeah, I had a rough plan for the week, which worked well. Having one big topic for roughly each day felt like a good pace.
Do you have any tips or advice for future RS curators?
I used a lot of photos from fieldwork, and when I got them organized ahead of time it made the tweeting to a lot faster–so I recommend that. Also, you never really know what topics / tweets will really catch on, so it’s good to be flexible and just try different things.
What other people or accounts should people follow if they enjoyed your tweets this week?
@SAOCousins @Al_R_Wallace @zlsteel @Tom_Swetnam @fifthdayprairie
Thanks once again Jesse from all of us here at RealScientists HQ. If you missed anything from Jesse’s week, the tweets are all collated at the following link.