Assessing the acoustic and physical disturbances of marine traffic on the Northern Resident Killer Whales in the Robson Bight Michael Bigg Ecological Reserve

The northern resident killer whale (NRKW) population off British Columbia’s coast is considered ‘threatened’ within Canada. Recent studies have shown that NRKWs face many threats, with a key stressor being the negative interaction with commercial and recreational vessel traffic. The Robson Bight Michael Bigg Ecological Reserve is a marine protected area in Johnstone Strait, east of Northern Vancouver Island. NRKWs migrate here in the summer to hunt, mate, and perform their unique “rubbing behaviour”.

Satellite Monitoring and Surveillance of Habitat for Right Whales

The critically endangered North Atlantic Right Whale resides in waters with busy shipping lanes in the Bay of Fundy and the Gulf of St. Lawrence, where incidents of ship strikes have proven to be a primary cause of whale death, resulting in their numbers dwindling to less than 400. Though the implementation of speed limits for ships has been somewhat successful in reducing mortality should a collision occur, a lack of knowledge as to the whereabouts of the whales has prevented ships from being able to avoid collisions entirely.

Assessment of metabarcoding eDNA as a strategy for risk evaluation and biomonitoring at disturbed environmental sites in Canada

Industry and environmental consultants are increasingly using environmental DNA (eDNA) metabarcoding approaches to complement traditional environmental risk assessments. However, the application of these technologies to field locations where sampling is limited due to access to secure sites, or remote locations where the environment is very heterogenous, poses challenges to acquiring representative eDNA samples. Furthermore, the interpretation of amplicon sequencing data from environmental samples presents extreme analytical challenges.

Building the Durham Region Food System Report Card: Assessing the opportunities and gaps in attaining a sustainable and just regional food system

Using simplified language understandable to a layperson; provide a general, one-paragraph description of the proposed research project to be undertaken by the intern(s) as well as the expected benefit to the partner organization. (100 - 150 words)
To address local food system issues like loss of farmland, people without enough food, or climate change impacts, it is important to see such issues as all related. This project will assess Durham Region food system resources, like local research and policy documents, to find strengths, areas to be addressed, and areas to be studied more.

Restoring the Historic Fire Regime in the Chittenden Meadow, Skagit Valley Provincial Park, BC

The proposed research project to be undertaken involves the following two objectives: (1) Evaluate the effectiveness of prescribed burning as a management technique for maintaining native vegetation in the Chittenden Meadow, which has ecological and cultural importance. Continued long-term monitoring of the meadow, including assessing burn intensity, will help to increase our understanding of vegetation community change following prescribed fires and will build on 13 years of existing data, and (2) Understand the historic role of fire in the surrounding forest and meadow.

Conservation of Plant-Pollinator Relationships in the Lower Columbia Region Program

The project proposes to enhance pollination networks and the diversity of interactions among both native plants and their native pollinator taking into account the changing climate and a history of habitat loss and degradation. The main goal is to increase the ecological connections among sites to work toward a more resilient landscape in the Lower Columbia Region in south-central British Columbia.

Structural Controls of Mineralization of the Sixtymile, Yukon Gold project

Demand for metals, including gold, is ever increasing particularly as modern technologies, including sustainable energy production, rely on such finite resources. As easily accessible surficial deposits in traditional mining areas such as the Sixtymile gold district, YK, deplete ever more advanced approaches to exploration are required that search deeper in the ‘bedrock’. However, exploration for gold in the bedrock of the Sixtymile gold district requires advanced knowledge of the subsurface distribution of rock types, which is controlled by geological processes such as faulting.

Arsenic in soil removal and beneficial reuse

The objective of the research is to develop a method for and pilot test the remediation of 3,000 tonnes of arsenic trioxide contaminated soils with concentrations up to 20,000mg/kg. Our project aims to research and develop an efficient and safe methodology of soil washing to remove the arsenic from soil, however other methods would be considered. Moreover, we would also like to find a way to treat the arsenic solution resulted from a successful soil washing. One of the possible way to reuse the arsenic solution is to convert it to gallium arsenide for the use in solar power production.

Supporting adaptive grizzly bear population management in British Columbia using dietary profiles

Stable isotope analysis is an important tool for identifying the primary foods present in wildlife diets. This project will use stable isotopes, collected from approximately 1000 hair samples, to develop dietary profiles of grizzly bears in British Columbia, Canada. The dietary profiles, representing the proportion of meat, fish, other marine fods, and vegetation in an individual bear’s diet, will be used to understand how the availability and quality of different foods, topography, climate and human pressures combine to influence bear diet throughout the province.

Building a Digital Development Readiness Tool with Indigenous Communities

This project will develop a new tool to identify strengths and needs in communities. This tool will be designed for and designed with Indigenous communities. This project will be a partnership between an Indigenous tech company, Function Four, and a research team at the University of Winnipeg. F4 already has and digital community assessment tool and the team will build on this tool to create the comprehensive assessment tool. This tool will assess areas that include community infrastructure, food production, health, and sovereign wealth development in Indigenous communities.

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