I am on a Dispatches from DNLee Adventure, but this time it's here in the States. The last several days have been spent outside in the fields and farmlands of central Illinois. Good times. As a PhD student, I spent several weekends (spread over a few months) trapping and collecting prairie voles. Microtus ochrogaster, for my dissertation research. Now I've returned Champaign-Urbana, Illinois, this time training and assisting one of the graduate students in my lab, also completing her dissertation work.

This is Marissa Rice, she studies the neurobehavioral biology of how voles use space and navigate to get around.

She is on Twitter, @RiceisReal, and you should totally follow her and ask her questions about her research.

This is one of the field sites were we spend our day - which starts at dawn checking traps. We go all day until dusk.

I'm drenched from walking through the thigh-high grass wet from morning dew.

I'm really proud of Marissa, she's learning the ropes beautifully. And when things get a little hard to decipher, we go the book to help us make the call.

I'm tweeting all about these adventures via my travel research hashtag #DispatchesDNLee. Drop by and check us out.