The University of Arizona

College of Agriculture and Life Sciences

Indigenous, endangered species, and parasites unfolded through science communication

Panoramic view of the Navajo Nation; Red Rock, AZ
Wednesday, November 11, 2020

Deandra Jones, an M.S. student in SNRE's Koprowski Lab, recently published her story in the AZ TWS Autumn Newsletter, sharing how her Indigenous roots and upbringing shape her perspective on wildlife research. Jones is a member of the Navajo Nation, Kinłichíí’nii born for Ashįįhí, and takes care to balance her cultural values with her scientific practices. Though this can be a daily challenge, a deep love for mother earth and her flora and fauna serves as a unifying connection. Jones is studying how introductions of new species with novel parasites may contribute toward biological invasions and endanger native species. Not only could her work illuminate routes of parasite transmission that are currently understudied, but through her research, Jones is also learning how to develop effective communication and conservation strategies that she hopes to bring back to her community. Click here to read her story (see page 5). 
Photo above: Panoramic view of Navajo lands in Red Rock, AZ; Photo credit: Deandra Jones
Slideshow Photo by Cayetano Gil on Unsplash; Monument Valley, located on Navajo lands