Volunteers are invited to register here for an opportunity to participate in environmental research as part of the BioTrails project (more about the project below). There are no educational or skills requirements. All adults (18+) welcome!
There will be two BioTrails events in 2014:
Kayak and collect!
Monday, June 16 (3–5 P.M.) – Tuesday, June 17 (all day)
Come kayaking with us in Frenchman Bay and help collect marine specimens in support of an environmental restoration project! The event will begin with an orientation at the MDI Biological Laboratory from 3–5 P.M. on Monday, June 16th. On Tuesday, June 17th, we will meet at the South Gouldsboro Boat Ramp at 7:15 A.M. for a kayak trip to nearby Stave Island, where we will collect marine invertebrate specimens for an ongoing eelgrass research and restoration project. In the afternoon, back at the MDI Biological Laboratory, we will process and sort our specimens for DNA-based identification, learn how advances in genetics have made it possible to identify insects (and other organisms) by their DNA, and give it a try yourself using "mystery" DNA reads collected at previous events. Register here.
Give a "BioBlitz" a try!
Saturday, July 20
Drop in on the fourteenth annual BioBlitz at Acadia National Park! This is a one-day public event that takes place on the Sunday of the annual, three-day insect inventorying event at the Schoodic Education and Research Center in Winter Harbor. Come and try your hand at collecting, sorting, and pinning insect specimens. Stay and learn how advances in genetics have made it possible to identify insects (and other organisms) by their DNA, and give it a try yourself using "mystery" DNA reads collected at previous BioBlitzes. Register here.
BioTrails is a project of the MDI Biological Laboratory in collaboration with the National Park Service and the Schoodic Education and Research Center Institute, and is supported by an award from the National Science Foundation (DRL-1223210). The goal of the project is to establish practices for combining public participation in scientific research (citizen science) with DNA-based species identification (DNA barcoding) to scale-up and improve the accuracy of research projects that monitor animal and plant species in the sea and on land as they respond to climate and environmental changes. Once established through this project, the BioTrails team will expand the model to other national parks and long-distance trails, paving the way for engaging more citizen scientists in more places to understand, monitor, and manage biodiversity in a changing world.
We welcome your interest! For more information, sign up for email alerts about BioTrails or contact the principal investigator of BioTrails, Karen James, at 207 288-9880 ext 427, or kjames [at] mdibl [dot] org.