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GLIN==> NY Sea Grant providing learning opp aboard EPA Lake Guardian

Title: NY Sea Grant providing learning opp aboard EPA Lake Guardian
For Immediate Release: July 24, 2003
Contact: Kara Lynn Dunn, 315-465-7578

Central and Western NY Teachers Enjoy Rare, $70,000 Learning Opportunity with
New York Sea Grant Aboard EPA Research Vessel Lake Guardian

Oswego, NY; Thursday, July 24, 2003 - Central and Western New York middle and high school teachers are enjoying a rare learning opportunity made aboard the 180-foot-long federal
research vessel Lake Guardian. The week-long educational tour valued at $70,000 is made possible by New York Sea Grant.

³This program offers teachers a great opportunity for a broad-based, hands-on learning experience aboard a fantastic research vessel, the Lake Guardian. The value of this program is $70,000 and illustrates how strongly the EPA believes, as does New York Sea Grant, in teaching teachers about the Great Lakes environment,² says Helen Domske, the NY Sea Grant Coastal Education Specialist leading the shipboard training program.

The week¹s activities include hands-on experience and the study of :
... Exotic species and the Great Lakes    
... Electro-shocking with the US Fish and Wildlife Service    
... Geology of the Great Lakes
... Lake Ontario Fisheries: trawling, aging fish, anatomy and physiology, diet and food choice
... Lower Great Lakes and St. Lawrence Research Update: Dr. John Fallon, SUNY-ESF presentation
... a presentation by Save The River, a non-governmental environmental organization based in Clayton on the St. Lawrence River
... Dunes Ecology with NY Sea Grant Educator Molly Thompson
... River Restoration and a visit to the Salmon River Hatchery     
... Botulism.

Only once per summer is the Lake Guardian made available for teacher training on the Great Lakes. Domske, who offers teacher training every summer, had the opportunity to teach aboard the R/V Lake Guardian on Lake Erie about four years ago. She is excited about the renewing that experience on Lake Ontario.

³Learning aboard the Lake Guardian has given these teachers the hands-on experiences of electro-shocking, seining (net collecting) and scientifically aging fish; and collecting plankton, lake bottom and water samples,² says Domske, who has more than 20 years¹ experience as an aquatic science educator. The group also traveled by van to the Black Pond Wildlife Management Area along the Lake Ontario shoreline in Southern Jefferson County for a program and dune ecology and to the Salmon River Fish Hatchery in Altmar.

The Lake Guardian is the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency¹s largest research and monitoring vessel and is the only self-contained, non-polluting research ship on the Great Lakes. The R/V Lake Guardian can carry a maximum of 27 scientists and 13 crew. Rooms include bunks, desks, lockers, and computer connections. The ship also has an excellent galley and exercise facilities. For the Summer 2003 NY Sea Grant Training Week NY Sea Grant Coastal Education Specialist Helen Domske was joined by middle and high school teachers from Central and Western New York, some graduate students, and a Cornell University scientist researching botulism in Lake Ontario.

The R/V Lake Guardian is equipped with three permanent laboratories:  a biology lab, a chemistry lab, and a multipurpose lab. Research and monitoring work aboard the vessel includes: food chain assessment; contaminant testing; and pH, turbidity, conductivity and dissolved oxygen measurement. Equipment aboard the R/V Lake Guardian includes a machine exclusive to the Lake Guardian and dubbed ³Phyto Vibes² for its shaking of algae into a collection bucket.  

For more information about New York Sea Grant, visit www.nysgextension.org or www.nyseagrant.org.
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