Hello! I’m Sabrina Aeluro. I’m a lifelong cat and nature lover and early-career researcher. I’m interested in helping fill a gap where the spay/neuter world is lacking: long-term, high-rigor field studies of spay/neuter programs. My goal is to be part of collaborations to find the most effective ways of reducing cat overpopulation using non-lethal, cat-friendly methods.
How? Through Kitizen Science, my citizen science approach to photographic mark-recapture population estimation that partners with spay/neuter organizations to study the work they are already doing. I’ve also been exploring other research areas related to cats.
To learn how to do all of this, I went back to school a bit later in life. I earned a Bachelor of Science from the University of Washington in Seattle in 2018 where I majored in Biology and completed minors in Microbiology and Environmental Science & Resource Management. In 2019, I completed an Applied Animal Behavior Certificate at the UW, and in 2020, a Graduate Certificate in One Health at the UW. I’ve also taken other graduate-level coursework in ecology and statistics.
On a personal level, I’ve lived in Seattle for most of my adult life. I’m a former clinic and foster volunteer at Seattle Humane, and now I’m a volunteer veterinary assistant at the Feral Cat Spay/Neuter Project. I volunteered on two trips to Kauai with the island-focused spay/neuter group Animal Balance. I was a volunteer in 2018 and 2019 for the Hayden Island Project, which uses road-based transect surveys to track free-roaming cats in Portland, Oregon.
I’ve done a lot of international travel (39 countries and counting!) focused on seeing the most amazing animals in the disappearing wild. During some of these trips, I have volunteered with or visited animal shelters, spay/neuter projects, and veterinary clinics in Ghana, Egypt, Guatemala, Fiji, India, Malaysia, and Indonesia. I love learning how people across the world are meeting challenges and working to help animals on limited budgets and in cultural contexts that are different from my own.
I also enjoy vegan cooking, gardening, photography, scuba diving, and my two special needs cats (Fig and Lychee) who are more popular and adorable than me.
Photo credits: Animal Balance, Spirit of Freedom crew.