Thursday, October 24, 2013

Dragonfly Larvae as Indicators of Mercury Contamination in Maine and Beyond

Patch_early_portraitThe Friends of Dr. Edith Marion Patch will host a presentation, “Dragonfly Larvae as Indicators of Mercury Contamination in Maine and Beyond” presented by Dr. Sarah Nelson of the University of Maine and Ed Lindsey and his students of Old Town High School. The program will begin at 10:00 on Saturday, October 26, at the Old Town Public Library, 46 Middle Street, Old Town.

Dr. Nelson is an Assistant Research Professor affiliated with the Senator George J. Mitchell Center and the School of Forest Resources. As a research biogeochemist and landscape ecologist, Sarah focuses on policy-relevant watershed and wetland science projects. Sarah has developed many collaborative outreach programs that inform and involve educators and citizens in scientific research. An effort to increase public awareness regarding the mercury issue, a citizen science project was expanded in 2012 to collect dragonfly larvae for mercury analysis in national parks. Working with the NPS-Air Resources Division, Sarah is piloting this project in 25 national parks across the U.S. This citizen science project engages students, teachers, and visitors in national parks. Moreover, the project supports the “Call to Action,” the NPS Centennial Initiative, by connecting people to parks and advancing the educational mission. Ed Lindsey is a science teacher at Old Town High School, and has spent several years working with Dr. Nelson and the Acadia Learning Program, studying the impact of mercury on the environment. Ed involves his students in most aspects of the research projects including fieldwork, data collection and data analysis.

Dr. Nelson and Mr. Lindsey will be available to answer questions during and after their talk. Refreshments will be offered.

This free program is one of a series of monthly public forums sponsored by the Friends of Dr. Edith Marion Patch. For more information, please contact Tiffany Wilson at 299-7240 or

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