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What's so exciting about fieldwork?

Before Eleanor studied aye-ayes she studied baboons, which are also primates.
 

During college I spent a lot of time at the San Diego Zoo. That's what gave me the idea of working with primates in the wild. I wrote lots of letters to people with whom I thought it would be cool to work. I got accepted as a field assistant on a project studying baboons and went to Tanzania for a year.

The most rewarding and intense adventures in my life have occurred during fieldwork. One time in Madagascar we were sitting under a tree in pitch black in the middle of the night waiting for an aye-aye to come out of its nest. Suddenly, out of nowhere, a mass of fireflies began to dance, circling round in the air. The 25-minute natural fireworks show those fireflies put on was one of the most beautiful sights I have ever seen.