October 24th, 2012 | Posted by Lee
Removing the duff
The students seem to “get it”.
“I think it’s actually really good for the meadow marshes to come back. And it’s like, a good experience for kids my age. And I also think it’s really fun.”
“I liked the fact that we had to go through all the cattails, like a maze. It was pretty cool. And knowing that we’re helping the environment by doing it, and doing all the research – I thought that was pretty cool.”
Our cattail project with SUNY-ESF was the subject of a tremendous story by NCPR reporter Joanna Richards. These quotes are taken from it.
We also appreciate Ms. Richards’ attention to the context – the impact of constrained water levels and the need for a more natural levels and flow regime – Plan Bv7.
No amount of yanking up cattails can make up for the damage done by the water levels regime of the last 50 years. Save The River wants to get the word out that a proposed new plan – called BV7 – would help marshes like Eel Bay return to greater biodiversity.
“Any awareness we can bring to it, whether it’s through seventh graders doing something like this and us publicizing it, or working with the villages and towns to go and talk to DEC and to the governor’s office, we’re just trying to get people to understand that this is a reasonable plan.”
It is worth a read. AND a listen.
October 13th, 2012 | Posted by Lee
Earlier this week, as part of its In the Schools program, Save The River, SUNY–ESF and local middle school students worked together on an experiment to help the students understand the effects of water levels in their own backyard.
Dr. Farrell talks to the group
Working with SUNY-ESF professor Dr. John Farrell and graduate researcher Matt Regan, 45 7th graders from Alexandria Central School engaged in a field study examining wetland responses to water levels. Students inventoried and excavated test plots at specific elevations, and monitored the effectiveness of removing the cattail mat and exposing the historic seed bank. This study is linked to efforts to get a more natural water levels regulation plan implemented – such as the currently proposed Plan Bv7.
The "Muskie" group hard at work
The experiment was designed to help students understand what River wetlands should be like (instead of wall-to-wall cattails), and indeed would be like if Plan Bv7 were implemented. The students removed the cattail mat in specific areas, and exposed the historic seed bank underneath. Over time, the species that return should be more diverse and represent a healthier mix of plants that in turn supports more fish and wildlife. The students will be able to monitor these changes over time and experience the impacts that water levels have on the River first hand.
This project was the result of a lot of hard work and collaboration. Thanks to SUNY-ESF and the Thousand Island Biological Station, Mary Mitchell and the team of 7th grade teachers from Alexandria Central Schools, The Minna Anthony Commons Nature Center and Wellesley Island State Park and, of course, staff of Save The River Kate Breheny and Stephanie Weiss.
February 16th, 2012 | Posted by Jennifer
Many of the presentations from Save The River’s Winter Environmental Weekend Conference are available via Save The River’s Vimeo channel. Or, select a specific presentation from the list below.
A Draft New Approach to Managing Water Levels and Flows on Lake Ontario and the St. Lawrence River from Jennifer Caddick on Vimeo.
Presentation by Frank Bevaqua, Public Information Officer with the International Joint Commission at Save The River’s 23rd annual Winter Conference, Clayton Opera House, Clayton, NY on February 4, 2012. To learn more about Save The River, visit www.savetheriver.org.
Great Lakes Water Levels, Lake Ontario Regulation, and Implications for Wetlands from Jennifer Caddick on Vimeo.
Presentation by Doug Wilcox Ph.D PWS, SUNY Brockport at Save The River’s 23rd annual Winter Conference, Clayton Opera House, Clayton, NY, on February 4, 2012. To learn more about Save The River and the conference, visit www.savetheriver.org.
Save The River In The Schools Education Program from Jennifer Caddick on Vimeo.
Presentation by Kathy Morris (Save The River Education Curriculum Consultant), Mary Bowman (Thousand Islands Middle School), and students at the 23rd annual Winter Conference held at the Clayton Opera House, Clayton, NY on February 4, 2012. To learn more about Save The River and the conference visit www.savetheriver.org.
Water for Nature, Water for People, Protecting and Restoring Environmental Flows from Jennifer Caddick on Vimeo.
Presentation by Tony Maas, Freshwater Program Director with WWF-Canada, at Save The River’s 23rd annual Winter Conference held at the Clayton Opera House, Clayton, NY on February 4, 2012. To learn more about Save The River and the conference visit www.savetheriver.org
April 13th, 2011 | Posted by Jennifer
October 26th, 2010 | Posted by Jennifer
Over the past year, Save the River has been working with North Country teachers to bring the St. Lawrence River into classrooms. Last week, for the first time, Save The River had the opportunity to bring the students to the River!
More than forty first graders from LaFargeville schools boarded a boat at the Minna Anthony Nature Center on Wellesley Island for a first hand look at the St. Lawrence. Once on board the boat, students spent an hour and a half getting to know the River – identifying Osprey nests, searching in wetlands for beaver dams, and learning to differentiate between living and non-living things, which is part of the first grade curriculum.
The boat ride complimented a Save The River curriculum project designed by LaFargeville teacher, Patrick Sullivan. Patrick’s curriculum, developed through a Save The River In The Schools program training session, combined River issues with the New York State Learning Standards.
Although this trip was a first for the Save The River In the Schools Program, it sets the stage for more such trips in the future.
Save The River recently received funding from the Fresh Sound Foundation to provide an ‘on the water’ experience to schools participating in the program. Currently, more than ten school districts are participating in the program at various grade levels, and it is Save The River’s goal to eventually reach all of the school districts that border the River.
For more on the day’s events, check out the following news story:
YNN (10/20/10): Youngsters Get First Hand Lesson on River
For More Information
Visit our Save The River In The Schools Program page or contact Stephanie Weiss, Save The River’s Assistant Director.
Special thanks for support of this project goes to the Fresh Sound Foundation, the Minna Anthony Nature Center and the LaFargeville Central School District.