Aaron Pereira | MSc Student

Co-supervised by Dr. Benedikt Schmidt (IEU Group LeaderSwiss Amphibian and Reptile Conservation Program) and Dr. Jasmin Winkler.

aaronMy interest in the fields of wildlife conservation, wildlife monitoring and ecology truly began when I was completing my Bachelors studies (B.Sc. – Chemistry) in the University of Mumbai, India. Although I come from a Chemistry background, I have completed a minor in Zoology and Botany, and in addition to this I had worked as a volunteer for certain conservation projects. One of these projects was focusing on avian diversity and the other on the Indian Leopard (Panther pardus fusca) in a conservation project based in Mumbai.

In order to focus on my interests and to pursue a career in this field, I decided to join the specialised Master in Environmental Sciences program at the University of Zurich.   For my Master’s thesis my study focuses on a pond building project in the Emmental region of Switzerland, which was setup to conserve populations of certain species of amphibians. I will be looking at whether these conservation efforts are paying off or whether they benefit a pathogenic fungus (Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis) which in turn can undermine these conservation efforts. I will also look at what factors affect the presence of the fungus in the ponds and the spread of it to other ponds. And another possible area we could look at is to see what role metapopulation processes play.

My supervisors for the project are Dr. Benedikt Schmidt and Dr. Jasmin Winkler, and my university supervisor is Dr. Arpat Ozgul. I work alongside my colleague and fellow master student Stephanie Vuichard who is focusing on the colonization of these ponds by A. obstetricans.

Outside my study life, you will find that I am a football (soccer for Americans) enthusiast, and I play a lot of other sports as well such as field hockey, badminton and basketball. I also have a passion for traveling which is yet to fully kick off. I also consider writing short stories and poems as some of my favourite hobbies.

2014-2016 MSc in Environmental Sciences, University of Zurich
2013 (Jan-December) Worked as an assistant to Dr. Vijay Gangan (Organic Chemistry- SD Fine Chemicals Ltd. and University of Mumbai) and volunteered in some conservation projects in India.
2010-2013 Bachelor in Chemistry, University of Mumbai