Over the next few weeks, the Lake Champlain Sea Grant team will be hosting “Zoom a Scientist,” an interactive webinar series focused on watershed and aquatic science.
Every Tuesday and Friday from noon until 1 pm scientists will lead viewers through the Lake Champlain watershed and share their research.
The programs will feature scientists from the University of Vermont Rubenstein Ecosystem Science Laboratory, SUNY Plattsburgh, the Lake Champlain Research Institute, and other organizations.
While most of the content in the series has been developed for middle and high school students, folks of all ages are welcome.
Scheduled webinars include:
Tuesday, March 31, noon to 1 pm
The first session begins on March 31st with Dr. Eric Howe of the Lake Champlain Basin Program discussing “Basin Basics–Watersheds and the State of Lake Champlain.” Click here to register.
The Lake Champlain Basin Program and the Champlain Basin Education Initiative will kick off the Zoom a Scientist series as they discuss watershed basics. Eric will also give highlights on the “State” of Lake Champlain. He’ll ask what watershed you live in, so give it some thought ahead of the program. Does your nearby lake, river or pond have good water quality or do you have some concerns? Can you swim in the water? Are there invasive species? Which species of fish live there? As stewards of your local waterbody, what are three steps you, your family, or your community could take that would help keep the water clean?
Friday, April 3, noon to 1 pm
Watershed Wise with Lake Champlain Sea Grant’s Education Team – Ashley Eaton, Nate Trachte & Caroline Blake.
Tuesday, April 7, noon to 1 pm
Oil Spill! with U.S. Coast Guard Lieutenant Commander – Jason Scott. Jason’s current graduate research at UVM focuses on oil spill preparedness in the Lake Champlain Basin. Learn how oil spills occur and the environmental impacts and what efforts can be taken to clean them up.
Friday, April 10, noon to 1 pm
Topic to be announced.
Tuesday, April 14, noon to 1 pm
What Do Fish Do in the Wintertime? with Master of Science Candidate – Ben Block. Winter in the North Country is cold and dark. Unlike humans, fish in northern lakes can’t migrate to Florida and wait for spring. Rather, fish have to adapt to the conditions of lakes. What do they do to handle the chill, the lack of light and little food?
Friday, April 17, noon to 1 pm
Climate Change in the Lake Champlain Basin: What’s Already Happened and Where We’re Headed with Climatologist – Dr. Eric Leibensperger. Climate change is here. We often think about climate change as a distant consequence of today’s action, but we are already experiencing the impacts. This discussion will highlight changes that we have already observed and the changes that are projected to occur in the Champlain Valley.
Tuesday, April 21, noon to 1 pm
A Fish’s Story: Following Lake Trout Movement around Lake Champlain with Master of Science Candidate – Matt Futia. Studying aquatic organisms can have additional challenges from limited direct observation. However, recent advances in technology have allowed for tracking individual fish to understand their movement across time. Learn what technologies are being employed and how they help us understand behaviors and resource use of Lake Champlain fish.
Friday, April 24, noon to 1 pm
Topic Coming Soon. with Dr. Danielle Garneau who has done extensive research on microplastics in Lake Champlain.
Tuesday, April 28, noon to 1 pm
Long-term Effects of Climate Change on Lakes and the Importance of Winter Sampling with Limnologist – Dr. Jennifer Brentrup. This episode looks at some of the research summarizing the effects of climate change and extreme events on lakes and the importance of sampling lakes year-round. Learn how dissolved oxygen levels are used to estimate lake metabolism under-ice.
Friday, May 1, noon to 1 pm
Sensing What is in the Water: Next-generation Sensor Technologies for Water Quality Monitoring with Lake Champlain Sea Grant’s Director – Dr. Breck Bowden. A review of how researchers measure water quality, traditional sampling methods, and how new technologies are giving us new insights.
Tuesday, May 5, noon to 1 pm
But how do we Know? Sampling Fish to Understand What’s Happening with Populations with Fisheries Biologist – Dr. Ellen Marsden. Water is an alien habitat for humans; most information about fish is collected by remotely sampling (bringing fish to the surface to study). How do scientists use those samples of fish to understand whether fish populations are healthy? Are they increasing or decreasing in abundance? How do we interpret the data from a few fish to a whole lake? What new methods are being developed for observing fish?
Friday, May 8, noon to 1 pm
Squeezing the Middle of Lake Champlain’s Food Web with Rubenstein Ecosystem Science Laboratory’s Director – Dr. Jason Stockwell. The recent surge in natural reproduction by lake trout is a success story, but can too much success be a bad thing? Dr. Stockwell’s research explores the interaction of lake trout natural reproduction and lake trout stocking strategies to evaluate if too many lake trout mouths will be too much for prey fish populations, especially in light of the potential for a quagga mussel invasion which may shunt food web energy and production to the bottom of the lake.
Tuesday, May 12, noon to 1 pm
Mapping our Streams and Lakes With Drones with the Director of the University of Vermont’s Spatial Analysis Laboratory – Jarlath O’Neil-Dunne. You have undoubtedly seen a drone fly and maybe you even own one to take pictures or shoot video but did you know we can also use drone technology for mapping and monitoring our streams and lakes? Learn how drones are being used to map invasive species, respond to floods, and track changes in streams in the Lake Champlain watershed.
More content will be developed in the coming weeks. Tune in to learn more about the Lake Champlain watershed from regional experts. If you’re looking for content specifically for kids, check out At-Home Creativity in the Water News from Near and Far section.
Photo of Dr. Danielle Garneau courtesy SUNY Plattsburgh.