Over the summer I joined a field team for two days to take soil samples from native forest regions around Auckland. It was part of a big project surveying the microorganisms present in New Zealand soils, which you can find out more about here. Understanding the microbial ecology of New Zealand’s soils is important for a variety of reasons, including determining the health of soil communities, and pathogen surveillance. We visited four sites over the two days and took numerous soil cores from transect lines, which involved a substantial amount of wading through thick understory bush and hill-clambering. It was great to get out to some locations that I’ve never visited before, as well as having fun photographing the fieldwork!