Center for Conservation Biology

Small grey and black dog stands on a stump in the woods


Athena is a fun-loving and happy pup who joined our pack at only 1 1/2 years old. Though she's only been with the program a short time, Athena has already had quite the career. On her first project, Athena worked on a wind farm in Illinois looking for bird and bat carcasses. From there, she worked in northeast Washington on a large carnivore study, tracking wolves, bears, cougars, coyotes, bobcats, and mustelids. Even though she was still pretty new to the program, Athena was chosen to travel all the way across the Pacific to Nepal and Vietnam, where she worked hard to find signs of pangolins, the most heavily trafficked mammal in the world! Athena was a rockstar, and thrived in the difficult terrain and climate. Her innate curiosity helped her handler through some tough days dealing with leeches, venomous snakes, steep slopes, and torrential down pours. Athena had a quick turn around once she got back to the US, driving cross country to the Adirondacks of upstate New York. Looking for moose scat, Athena actually encountered a bull moose while surveying! The population in the ADK is very elusive, so this is a rare occurrence for the teams on this study.