Wildlife Vocalizations: Afsheen Siddiqi

Wildlife Vocalizations is a collection of short personal perspectives from people in the field of wildlife sciences.

A photo of Afsheen Siddiqi.
Credit: Courtesy of Afsheen Siddiqi

As a wildlife biologist working for the State of Hawaii Department of Land and Natural Resources Division of Forestry and Wildlife, I have the pleasure of working with some of the most dedicated and passionate people. I, like most biologists, came into the profession dreaming of working outdoors, being where the action is. Yet today, I find myself in an office setting doing conservation work behind a desk. I am not complaining. I truly have found my dream job and career, but I wish I had spent more time as a field tech. I remember one of the first temporary field jobs I had and the feeling that came over me on my first early morning awake before my study. I was so happy observing and waiting to catch the first bird in our morning traps for the purposes of a long-term population study. I have had some amazing field experiences, including one that took me to the breathtaking remote seabird paradise Kure Atoll or Hōlanikū in the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands, where on my time off, I would often sit and observe my surroundings. I treasure these experiences, and they are the source of my passion in my job today. So to all the young biologists, I wish I would have known at 18 that I should do more and more temporary field jobs to learn new techniques, gain professional experiences and see the world. Field tech jobs are really the best. The more on-the ground work you can accomplish, the more connected you become with the earth. Start early and get involved out there!

Afsheen Siddiqi plants native species on Midway Atoll.
Credit: Leila Nagatani

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Header Image: Afsheen Siddiqi enjoys natural spaces. Credit: Courtesy of Afsheen Siddiqi