Click HERE to download the 2017 Math Science Expedition Application
Click HERE to download the 2017 Advanced MSE Fish & Game Internship Application
Click HERE to download the MSE Flyer
Click HERE to watch to 2015 MSE Movie
When: July 20 – July 28, 2017
Students applying to participate in the internship should be highly motivated individuals who are interested in learning more about the area’s natural resources. Students will be involved in assisting biologists with counting salmon, sampling fish for biological data, collecting habitat information, and completing a curriculum of learning activities ranging from fish dissections to analyzing fisheries data. Students will spend seven days at the remote field camps of the George River as well as the George River Weir. Students will spend 5 days floating the George River as well setting up 5 more stations along the way. The interns’ travel to and from the project site and room and board will be paid. The intern will also receive a $500 stipend after successful completion of the program. Interns must complete the written curriculum before the stipend will be paid. Also High School Students can earn 0.5 credits in River Systems Ecology.
• Participants must be between 14-19 years of age
• Participants should be a resident of one of the Kuspuk villages but applications from other villages will be considered
• Participants must have completed 2 prior Math Science Expeditions on the Salmon / Aniak River. Also must be recommended by MSE Staff
• Participants must have a mature attitude and good work ethic
• Participants must be motivated to complete all work and written assignments
Complete Applications Include the Following
• Application form signed by a parent or legal guardian
• Cover Letter
(Cover Letter needs to be addressed to
Kuspuk School District,
Attn: Erich Kuball,
PO Box 49,
Aniak AK 99557)
• Copy of two forms of ID
• Employment Verification Form (I-9)
• W-4 Form
The George River will provide some unique opportunities for this project. First there is the weir location in the lower river which provides salmon escapement numbers. Second, not far above the weir the river essentially splits into two forks which are very similar in catchment area and physical characteristics. This could provide an opportunity for conducting a “paired watershed” type of study. The watershed is predominantly oriented north and south, and is not heavily vegetated, which may result in an increase in thermal regimes, relative to other watersheds in the Kuskokwim basin. There is an active mining operation in the one fork, the extent of which I don’t know.
Logistically, the George is relatively close to Aniak and Napaimute, and has one established airstrip (Granite) up at the mine. The feasibility to float down from this airstrip is unknown; however it appears that suitable reference sites could be accessed by jetboat, for each fork.
General Study Design:
Establish a minimum of two long term reference sites on each fork, and one below the forks but above the weir. Each site would consist of; a main channel location and an off channel location, preferably a spring brook, for a total of 10 sampling locations.
At the main channel site below the forks and one in each fork a permanent reference site would be established. These sites would be instrumented with continuous data recording pressure transducers and temperature loggers. Additional physical measures would also be collected at these sites, i.e. discharge, pebble counts, embeddedness, water chemistry, other?
All sites would collect information, such as species abundance estimates, salmon condition factor, macroinvertebrates, habitat characterization, stable isotope collections, temperature loggers, ysi water quality measures, other
Adult salmon monitoring could consist of; a few days at the weir doing counts, asl, etc. Future work could involve tagging at the weir (for apportionment) between forks, carcass surveys or aerial surveys.
Data collection would occur over a two week period (including logistics) July 17 - July 31. Measures would be repeated annually, and expanded as project evolves.
This centers on middle and senior high school students spending several days rafting down the Salmon and Aniak rivers in the company of several adults who engage students in a variety of math, science, and leadership activities. In recent years science and math activities have focused on conducting standardized surveys of the juvenile fish community at each campsite with the objective of assessing whether changes occur in the species composition as students progressed from subalpine headwaters where the narrow steep sided channel cuts through bedrock, to the mainstream Aniak River with a broad flood plain of braided channels lined with tall spruce and poplar trees and abundant in-channel large woody debris. At the end of the float trip each student leaves with a data set that includes speciated catches from replicate samples at each camp site coupled with paired fish length and weight measurements. Adult mentors follow-up to encourage students to use their data set in developing science fair projects. The MSE is being presented here as a model that could be adapted at other schools to use citizen science as a means to increase research and monitoring capacity. Students can earn 0.5 credits in "Introduction to Fish Biology."
When: August 23 – September 3, 2017
(Travel days to/from Aniak: August 23 & September 4)
What: Instruction and assessment
Who: 25-30 students / 7 facilitators