Researching the Invasive

NWCC students collaborate with Smithsonian and DFO researchers on invasive species

October 29, 2015

Prince Rupert, BC – This month, scientists from the Smithsonian Environmental Research Centre in California and Maryland, and Fisheries and Oceans Canada (DFO) Nanaimo gathered on docks around Prince Rupert and Port Edward. These experts came north to work with the students of the Northwest Community College Applied Coastal Ecology (ACE) program and with Jason Scherr of the Prince Rupert Port authority. The goal of this collaboration is to monitor northern waters for marine invertebrates.

Preparation for the scientists’ visit began in the spring when NWCC students placed 50 thin, PVC panels, called settling plates, one metre below the water surface off floating docks from the Prince Rupert Industrial Park to Port Edward. Now the students and scientists are retrieving and examining the plates to identify and count each species, taking samples of all of the marine invertebrates present for subsequent examination and DNA analysis.

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