Anahita (Ana) Verahrami


Extension Consultant


Conservation • Bioacoustics • Capacity building • Community engagement • Science communication

Through my role with the Yang Center for Conservation Bioacoustics, I support the development of training materials that provides conservation practitioners with the necessary knowledge to utilize acoustic monitoring to answer research questions related to occupancy, acoustic localization, noise pollution, and more. I am passionate about capacity building and amplifying the power of local communities to manage their own natural resources using bioacoustics and am very excited to be in this role to support this passion of mine!

In 2016, while an undergraduate student at Cornell, I began volunteering with the Elephant Listening Project (ELP) which is part of the Yang Center for Conservation Bioacoustics. Upon my graduation in 2017, I began a part-time role with ELP, supporting their research and science communication endeavors. This work even allowed me to travel to the Central African Republic, where I spent four months in 2018 and two months in 2020 collecting data on forest elephant behavior, vocalizations, demography, and more at Dzanga Bai.

In addition to this work with ELP, I also worked part-time with the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences (CALS) Office of Marketing and Communication, supporting content development and archiving for the College, where I further developed my passion for photography and media development more broadly.

In 2020, I left both of these jobs in Ithaca and moved to Fort Collins to begin a role as a graduate research assistant and obtain my masters in the Department of Fish, Wildlife, and Conservation Biology at Colorado State University. For my thesis, I spent two months in the Republic of Congo initiating a project to develop a machine learning algorithm to distinguish gunshots between gun type, a project that is currently ongoing. I also utilized acoustic data collected by ELP to explore changes in forest elephant vocal activity and occupancy in response to gun hunting in Nouabalé-Ndoki National Park.

Beyond my thesis research, I also began to engage with projects related to social and environmental justice in conservation and ecology, which I am still actively involved with today.

In addition to my part-time role with the Yang Center for Conservation Bioacoustics, I am currently working full-time as a writer and support specialist for the Office of the Dean of CALS at Cornell University. Through these roles, I develop written content related but not limited to scientific research and innovation, policy, fundraising, stakeholder engagement, and student, staff, and faculty support to promote initiatives led by the college’s Dean, Dr. Benjamin Houlton, and Associate Dean of Research and Innovation, Dr. Xingen Lei.

My future career goals focus on utilizing passive acoustic monitoring systems to increase our understanding of the complex relationships between anthropogenic disturbances and species’ activities, behaviors, and survival.

From my work with ELP, I have developed a special interest in the application of acoustic monitoring for studying and conserving populations of forest elephants in Central Africa through partnerships with local communities, using a decolonized and justice-oriented approach.

I also have a strong interest in promoting justice, equity, diversity, and inclusion through both my professional and personal interactions. This advocacy is grounded in my lived experiences as a Zoroastrian woman, as a member and ally of the LGBTQIA+ community, as a person who is neurodivergent, and in my firm belief that the recognition and equitable inclusion of a diversity of theories, perspectives, and identities will significantly augment scientific comprehension of our world and our capacity to preserve it.


M.S., Colorado State University, Department of Fish, Wildlife, and Conservation Biology
B.S., Cornell University, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences

Outside the Cornell Lab

The best decision I’ve ever made was adopting my 90-lbs lapdog, Oscar! Some of our favorite activities involve romping around the dog park and hiking the trails in my backyard where Oscar showcases his naturalist tendencies (though his catch-and-release policy is a bit questionable). In addition to spending time with Oscar, I enjoy photography, crafting, reading, and spending time outdoors with friends!

Woman stands in the woods with a clipboard
Center K. Lisa Yang Center for Conservation Bioacoustics
Projects Elephant Listening Project
Website Website

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Golden-cheeked Warbler by Bryan Calk/Macaulay Library