In this high-paced, tech world it is nice to change the style of learning every once in a while, to unravel scientific methods that have stood the test of time.
Students in Jonathan Maletta’s science classes at Earl L. Vandermeulen High School visited the Cold Spring Harbor Fish Hatchery and Aquarium recently to observe a centuries-old aquaculture technique used to sustain the populations of brook trout, our New York State fish. A heritage strain of fertilized eggs were collected and safely transported back to school as part of a conservation program. For the remaining school year, students will care for this environmentally sensitive species.
“Similar to the North America river otter, brook trout are classified as a true indicator species that act as a barometer of environmental health,” Mr. Maletta said. “Their presence or absence tells a story about our ambient environmental conditions. When water runs clean and clear, they survive and thrive.”
According to Mr. Maletta, the presence of brook trout in rivers throughout New England was once an immutable law of nature. Environmental degradation, pollution and climate change have created a multifaceted problem for a species that has a narrow range of tolerance (i.e., a strong preference for cold temperature regimes). As a result, they are extirpated from more than half of their native rivers in lower New England.
With some hope on the horizon, Mr. Maletta’s students will help to reestablish a small population of brook trout on the north shore of Long Island.
Date Added: 11/23/2022