Thursday, August 28, 2014

Preliminary Sources : The Long, Long Road Ahead

Today I made note of the webpage that gave me this idea in the first place: a post on about freshwater conservation. It provided a link to an interview with Paul Jepson from the University of Oxford and Will Darwall, Head of the IUCN Freshwater Biodiversity Unit, as well as the Biofresh blog. By next week, my topic will be solidified and expanded upon in a future blog post. I also bounced ideas off colleagues to help narrow down and focus the scope of this project.

My list of reasons to do this thesis:
-No significant media coverage of freshwater environments
-Many endangered habitats and species
-Many keystone (vital to health of environment) species
-Important food sources
-Freshwater is much scarcer than saltwater and land
-A devoted hobby dedicated to keeping fish
-Almost nobody seems to care

Links for today:

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Thesis Topic Change

    Earlier last week I decided to change my thesis topic from finding a family for the enigmatic catfish Conorhynchos conirostris to a freshwater diversity advocacy group. I still need to narrow down and finalize what exactly I'm doing, though. I changed my topic because of possible issues with finding sources, and the relative obscurity of the fish. Few pictures of it are online, and little information aside from its size and possible familial relationships are known. Furthermore, I wouldn't know where to source a specimen, so I can't really make observations accurately.
    I chose this current topic because I still wanted to do something with fish, and many freshwater environments containing thousands of unique species are endangered by pollution and habitat loss. Also, freshwater creatures are not really noticed by the media and general public, who'd rather pay attention and donate to funds protecting large and/or cute mammals and birds. If I write well and draw interesting conclusions, maybe some people would start to care.