Biotic communities in restoring salt marshes

Salt marshes are important coastal ecosystems that provide many services. Due to their high soil fertility, they have a long history of being converted to farmland. There is now growing interest in restoring salt marshes to protect against coastal erosion, mitigate sea level rise, and provide increased habitat for fish, birds, etc. Ducks Unlimited Canada and partners initiated 5 salt marsh restoration projects between 2010–2020, in the Bay of Fundy and southern Gulf of St.

Investigating Microplastics Contamination in Yukon’s Freshwaters and Fish

Microplastics (MP), defined as any plastic polymer particles

Towards designing a bioreactor for the BioLogix™ Product: Identification of microbial communities and their optimal growth conditions for in situ and ex situ hydrocarbon bioremediation

In this project, the intern will determine the identity of the bacterial species present in the BioLogix consortium, as well as determine how to best grow these bacteria in the lab and in the field. The intern will also use this information to aid in the design of technology and equipment to effectively grow BioLogix in the field. By the end of this research Delta Remediation can expect to have received information regarding the species present in their product, how to best grow those species in the lab and design help for technology to grow their product in the field.

Evaluation of Upland Rice Production in Southern Alberta

This project involves first steps needed to begin growing rice under irrigation in southern Alberta. Trials will use Seed Film Cultivation (SFC) technology to suppress weeds, increase soil temperature, and reduce evaporative moisture losses. Rice grown with SFC will be compared to direct seeded plots and transplanted rice seedlings. Irrigation will be provided by an overhead pivot system or by sub-surface drip irrigation. Plant growth parameters and yield will be assessed, and this work will inform future research required to establish a rice production industry in Alberta.

The Biocontrol of Blackleg Using Carnivorous Bacteria

Canola is one of Canada’s most important agricultural crops. Blackleg is a serious disease of canola potentially causing losses of hundreds of millions of dollars per year. This project will provide a new method of biocontrol of blackleg which will prevent or reduce losses to canola. This biocontrol method uses bacteria which are predators of other bacteria and fungi such as Leptosphaeria maculans, the cause of blackleg. The Mitacs intern for this project will isolate these predatory bacteria from soil and determine whether they can kill or stop the growth of Leptosphaeria maculans.

Investigating the in vivo antiviral effects of “Pheophorbide a” in a mouse model of SARS-CoV-2 infection

The COVID-19 pandemic continues to represent a global health risk. Definite strides have been made to limit infection through the use of personal protective equipment and mass vaccinations, yet new variants of the virus that causes COVID-19 are still being detected in the population and spreading worldwide. As the pandemic enters its third year, medical professionals must focus on developing new ways to stop these variants. One way is to study compounds that are able to kill cells infected with virus and are known as antivirals.

Automated high-throughput characterization of microbiome composition and diversity

The mineral mining industry in Canada is rapidly shifting toward more sustainable practices that reduce the environmental impacts of extraction, wastewater, and emissions. Although often overlooked, microorganisms, or bacteria, living in the soils and water of mine sites and mining waste materials, collectively known as the ““mining microbiome”, exert strong influence on all stages of the mining life cycle. For example, microorganisms may cause corrosion of equipment via biofouling (corrosion), or be essential to mine cleanup through processes known as bioremediation.

Zooplankton species composition during hatching and development of Atlantic Whitefish (Coregonus huntsmani) in the upper Petite Rivière watershed, Nova Scotia

This research project aims to build a greater understanding of the diet of endangered Atlantic whitefish. The only wild population in the world inhabits three lakes of the Petite Rivière watershed in Nova Scotia. The species has great historical significance being the most primitive of all whitefish species in Canada. Yet, there is little known about this unique fish, including their diet. Since 2018, the non-profit environmental organization, Coastal Action, has collected samples of tiny aquatic invertebrates, zooplankton, which are a main food source for juveniles.

Co-creating and operationalizing multi-sectoral scenarios of ocean use to forecast the Maritimes’ marine futures

Scenarios are commonly applied tools that can be used to envision alternative pathways for nature and society. This project will developthe first set of ocean futures scenarios for the Maritime region. The intern will then lead participatory workshops with local stakeholdersto co-develop multi-sectoral scenarios of ocean use for the Maritime region, including a ‘brighter future for the oceans’ scenario.Developed scenarios will be used to guide policy and management recommendations for the Maritime regions, with the aim of building amore sustainable ocean future.

Co-construction of the lower Wolastoq-St. John River Climate Adaptation Plan

This applied research project addresses the question of regional adaptation planning to impacts of climate change and extreme weather events in the rural lower Wolastoq-Saint-John River region. It is piloted by the non-profit Voices for Sustainable Environments and Communities and supported by the Universities of Waterloo, Téluq and Moncton. Two municipalities and nine local service districts (LSD) are involved in the project. The study region experienced significant flood events in 2018 and 2019.

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