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Mireya Mayor, Ph.D.

of Amazon Conservation Team

Scientist, explorer, wildlife correspondent, and inspirational speaker, Mireya Mayor, a Ph.D. in Anthropology, has reported on wildlife and habitat issues to worldwide audiences for more than a decade. Having dedicated her life to unlocking the mysteries of the natural world, she ventures into previously unexplored parts of the planet to study rare species, working closely with indigenous people in the process. In 2000 Mireya co-discovered a new species of mouse lemur in Madagascar.

Mireya is the author of Pink Boots and a Machete: My Journey From NFL Cheerleader to National Geographic Explorer, in which she shares her transformation from cheerleader to scientist and her many adventures in the wilds -- including surviving a plane crash, sleeping in jungles teeming with venomous snakes, rappelling down a 14,000-foot sinkhole in search of frogs, and being charged by an irate silverback gorilla.

Read more about Mireya on her website.

Watch a Nat Geo Live! video of Mireya talking about her life and work.

On World Indigenous Peoples Day, Celebrating a Woman who Must Be Nameless

As a scientist and conservationist, I have spent much of my professional life in the rainforests of the world trying to understand and preserve these incredible and irreplaceable ecosystems. To many it seems unusual that a former NFL cheerleader would choose to go and live in some of the most remote places on Earth and brave…

Water, Wildlife and Hope: Rejuvenating a Kogi Sacred Site

After years of planning, designing, acquiring materials, developing infrastructure, laying and burying 1,200 meters of pipe, and testing water quality and functionality, the seemingly impossible was achieved: for Colombia’s Kogi people, and their related tribes who rely on Jaba Tañiwashkaka, a historically sacred site, an aqueduct that provides access to water for crop irrigation and potable water for consumption is now in place. And thanks to a determined site restoration effort, alligators, nutria, and capybara are only a few of the animals now seen in a wetland previously largely devoid of wildlife.

Amazon Tribes Use Mapping Technologies to Empower Cultural Stewardship of Ancestral Lands

I first started working in South America 20 years ago. Without much outdoor experience, survival skills or even a passport, I made plans to explore the remote and virtually unexplored jungles of Guyana. Not only had I never left the U.S., I had never even been camping. Not even as a Girl Scout. While I…

Jungle Science and the Future of Conservation

My love of science comes from many places. I am drawn to the adventure, the exploration, and the possibility of discovery. Like many scientists, my thirst for knowledge stems from an insatiable curiosity about the unknown. Unlike many scientists, my “laboratory” is far from civilization. In an age of technology where information is consistently and…

Help Needed for Survivors of Devastating Floods in Madagascar

Dozens of people have died and tens of thousand are homeless in the wake of devastating floods that swept through the African island country of Madagascar during a recent cyclone. The disaster was aggravated by ongoing deforestation and environment degradation. Survivors need our help.