PSU Biology Students Present Research at Regional Scientific Conference

December 2nd, 2009 by Adam

PLYMOUTH, N.H.-
Students of Plymouth State University’s Freshwater Ecology class (Department of Biological Sciences) attended the 8th Annual Environmental Research Symposium at Bridgewater State College in Massachusetts Nov. 14. This undergraduate scientific conference was attended by more than 120 people and included 58 poster presentations by students from Connecticut, Massachusetts, Rhode Island and New Hampshire. 22 students from Plymouth State presented seven posters, according to their faculty mentor, Dr. Kerry Yurewicz.

“The topics students investigated ranged from fundamental ecological questions about the factors shaping animal behavior and distribution patterns to applied environmental issues such as the impact of road salt on freshwater biodiversity,” said Yurewicz. “The benefit of this project is that it enabled students to experience the entire scientific process, from generating hypotheses to designing methods, collecting and analyzing data, and finally communicating their results to an audience of their peers.”

Senior Adam LaBonte, a Biology major, said, “The symposium was a great experience for looking into the multitude of topics that dominate and that may soon dominate research in environmental biology.”

Ashley Pinkham, a Senior majoring in Biology, added, “I learned how to act as a scientist and teacher to educate people on the importance of the topic we studied.”
The Plymouth State presentations include:

Ben Crawford, Rebecca Mailhot, Kris Wojtusik, and Kerry Yurewicz. Habitat preference of crayfish (Orconectes virilis) among three different macrophytes.

Trevor Dickerman, Josh Foster, Emily Berube, Ian Blakeney, and Kerry Yurewicz. The preference of freshwater fish for two types of live versus artificial baits.

Katherine Holder, Devin Arn, Will Colt, and Kerry Yurewicz. Road salt versus Ice Ban®: the effect of deicing agents on the survival of dragonfly larvae.

Dylan Jackson, Basil O’Leary, Donal Magrane, and Kerry Yurewicz. Response of experimental freshwater communities to increasing dissolved road salt concentrations.

Adam LaBonte, Ashley Pinkham, Christopher Freeman, Mariana Graves, and Kerry Yurewicz. Factors associated with the abundance of the mussel Elliptio complanata in three freshwater ponds near a major highway in central New Hampshire.

Laura Pinkham, Nathan Furey, Ashley Wasilew, and Kerry Yurewicz. Trends in overall water quality at four sites along the Pemigewasset River, New Hampshire from 1990 to 2009.

Phil Thompson, Elizabeth Zack, and Kerry Yurewicz. Influence of macrophyte presence on the distribution of invertebrates within a freshwater pond.

The posters are displayed in the first floor hallway of the Boyd Science Building.

For more information about this release, contact Bruce Lyndes, PSU Media Relations Mgr., (603) 535-2775 or blyndes@plymouth.edu

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