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Snow Geese and De-vegetation on Alaska's North Slope

July 11-23 and August 1-4, 2005 | Ikpikpuk River delta, Alaska

JOURNALS!

Click here to read teacher's journals, ask questions, or view photo galleries.
Leslie Pierce Teacher
Leslie Pierce
Barrow High School
Barrow, Alaska
Brian Person Researcher
Brian Person
Department of Wildlife Management
North Slope Borough, Alaska

Listen to researcher Brian Person describe his research project and teacher Leslie Pierce talk about her expectations of the field experience in this audio file from a recent TREC webinar. To listen, click the link below:

mp3 Audio - Webinar (1.4 MB - MP3)

Leslie and Brian explored the Ikpikpuk River delta in the North Slope of Alaska to examine the rate at which snow geese de-vegetate salt marsh habitats. The experiment was designed to better the understanding of how quickly de-vegetation occurs and the rate at which vegetation can re-establish itself in affected areas. This study, funded by the North Slope Borough Department of Wildlife Management, relied on "enclosures" that were established in 2004, and will help wildlife managers and scientists better understand plant-animal interactions and goose population dynamics.

Leslie Pierce is a high school biology teacher at Barrow High school. Her main interests lie in arctic ecology and the impact of global changes on the flora and fauna. In the past she has participated in summer projects on genetics and fire ecology, and was named the Outstanding High School Science Teacher at the 2001 Alaska State Science and Engineering Fair. Ms. Pierce hopes this TREC expedition will give her field experience in the North Slope, and will allow her to share this experience beyond her classroom with help of the internet and to encourage ongoing interest in science and research.

Brian Person is a scientist with the Department of Wildlife Management for the North Slope Borough of Alaska. Dr. Person believes that the TREC program is an excellent way for Leslie to bring field experience directly back to the classroom.

He enjoyed the opportunity to interact with Leslie’s students by displaying plant identification techniques, and explaining the effects that the nutritional environment has on gosling growth and subsequent population dynamics. Dr. Person’s ultimate hope is that through this experience, he and Leslie were able to encourage students to pursue careers in science.


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