Hello everyone! Reporting live from the 2022 Kane County Blandings Field Season! In our first post of the season, we would like to introduce this year’s Wildlife Epidemiology Lab students!

My name is Dylan Burke and I am a second-year veterinary student at the University of Illinois and received a B.S. in Animal Science here in 2020. Before I began my pursuit of a veterinary career I served in the Marine Corps, specializing in amphibious reconnaissance. I am excited to get back to my amphibious roots and become acquainted with my home state’s wild side in search of its native turtles.

My name is Maura Ryan, and I am a second-year veterinary student at the University of Illinois.I received my B.S in Biology and minor in Spanish from Saint Louis University in 2020. My future career aspirations are to continue my education after veterinary school by doing a small animal rotating internship followed by a residency in veterinary anesthesiology or zoological medicine. My love for exotic species started during my undergraduate education as a student research assistant in a Painted Turtle Lab and has continued to grow during my experiences in the Wildlife Epidemiology Lab. As a returning Kane County WEL student, I am excited to get

back into the field and visit the sites where it all began. The things I am looking forward to the most out of this field season are continuing our endangered species work as well as my personal project looking at Common Snapper Health!