Field Work during Covid-19 lockdown South Africa

Like for many others out there, this year hasn’t worked out like I planned. After less than two weeks of field work at the KMP, the field station closed for outside visitors to limit spread of the corona virus. Not long after, South Africa was in national full lockdown. I had planned top stay on site for about a months, then go for holiday before being back in Sweden later in April. Now I stayed in field for three months instead. At the Kuruman Rivier Reseve we ere lucky to be able to continue our work as normal (but I wasn’t able to collect samples outside the reseve). All in all, now being back in Sweden for almost a week, I am very grateful for how smooth and successful the long-term population trapping on the reserve went this season – 242 animals out of 35 groups in total – a record!

I also got the privilege to trap my favourite mole-rat, “Boboti” for a third time! (Photo above) I find the single females that stay solitary for years before (if ever) finding a mate both empowering but sad at the same way. Social distancing can’t be that difficult for these guys!

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