This month’s A Load of Croc is a testimonial written by CRC intern Gary Moscarelli about his 2-month experience of research and community outreach in Belize.

My time as an intern at the CRC was a life changing experience. The skills that I learned as a
scientist working in the field were absolutely priceless and allowed me to truly understand
what it takes to be a field researcher in conservation. I am so grateful for the incredible
support and interest Dr. Marisa Tellez took in my studies that I was collecting data for, as well as my
own NGO project. The genuine support the CRC shows interns that show passion in a certain
field of conservation is absolutely astounding, and being involved with such a hardworking,
close-knit team was incredibly inspiring. I absolutely fell in love with Placencia. The culture,
the wildlife and the people will forever hold a place in my heart. Belize is such an incredible
country and the CRC make sure their interns get a chance to explore and appreciate
everything this magical place has to offer, from night herping trips into the breath-taking
cockscomb forest basin, to weekly volleyball on the beach every “Sunday Funday”, you
really get to experience Belize to the max during your time here.

Although my passion and main focus was crocodile conservation, the CRC understands that
to protect one species, you must protect the entire ecosystem. From glorious 5am bird surveys
exploring the mangroves (not so glorious if it’s a Monday and you had a little too much fun
on a Sunday Funday!!), to biodiversity studies of the local reptilian and mammalian life, the
CRC gives you a broad experience of conservation and the techniques that you need to know.

CRC may have only been home for 2 months, but it feels like family now. Thank you,
Marisa, Jonathan, Darcy, Captain Carl, and Jane, for everything this summer, and I can’t wait to be
back again. The next round at Umaya is on me!

Enjoying a moment with a croc after a capture survey. All research is permitted by the Belize Forest Department.

Enjoying the mangrove during biodiversity surveys