Proposed Abstract Title

The Ocean Students' Society Forage Fish Program: The Value of Citizen Scientists to Shoreline Monitoring Efforts

Type of Presentation

Poster

Session Title

General shoreline topics

Location

2016SSEC

Description

The UVic Ocean Students’ Society Forage Fish Program is a volunteer-based experience opportunity that involves the surveys of upper intertidal sediment for spawn of the Surf smelt Hypomesus pretiosus and Pacific sand lance Ammodytes hexapterus. Volunteers consist of students, scientists, and citizens keen on the preservation of intertidal habitats, forage fish populations, and the survival of their predators. The program is a subset of Sea Watch Society, which consists of citizen scientist groups surveying shorelines throughout the Salish Sea. Since the program was launched in January 2013, the OSS has become one of the most productive surveying teams on Vancouver Island. The club continues to expand with the help of community efforts and will continue to provide ocean education and credible experiences in return. The program gives students hands on training in field and lab sampling techniques involving real data and research, which a typical degree program does not offer. Students also get a head start on becoming experts in forage fish ecology by giving them a more in-depth look into species characteristics as well as impacts of human development on the geographical and environmental characteristics of spawning shorelines; all hot topics in a changing Salish Sea.

As of December 2015 the OSS has surveyed 26 beaches, taken over 150 sediment samples, and offered countless experiences and opportunities to students.

Comments

All presenters are UVic Undergraduates of the Ocean Students' Society

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The Ocean Students' Society Forage Fish Program: The Value of Citizen Scientists to Shoreline Monitoring Efforts

2016SSEC

The UVic Ocean Students’ Society Forage Fish Program is a volunteer-based experience opportunity that involves the surveys of upper intertidal sediment for spawn of the Surf smelt Hypomesus pretiosus and Pacific sand lance Ammodytes hexapterus. Volunteers consist of students, scientists, and citizens keen on the preservation of intertidal habitats, forage fish populations, and the survival of their predators. The program is a subset of Sea Watch Society, which consists of citizen scientist groups surveying shorelines throughout the Salish Sea. Since the program was launched in January 2013, the OSS has become one of the most productive surveying teams on Vancouver Island. The club continues to expand with the help of community efforts and will continue to provide ocean education and credible experiences in return. The program gives students hands on training in field and lab sampling techniques involving real data and research, which a typical degree program does not offer. Students also get a head start on becoming experts in forage fish ecology by giving them a more in-depth look into species characteristics as well as impacts of human development on the geographical and environmental characteristics of spawning shorelines; all hot topics in a changing Salish Sea.

As of December 2015 the OSS has surveyed 26 beaches, taken over 150 sediment samples, and offered countless experiences and opportunities to students.