Sturgeon Research Workshop for Educators

By Steve Stewart

A prehistoric fish + fishery researchers = one extraordinary teaching opportunity for Michigan educators!

Fourteen educators from ten different schools convened at the COSEE Great Lakes Sturgeon Research Workshop for Educators in Onaway, Michigan, to learn about lake sturgeon research, exploring educational linkages and opportunities related to this incredible and charismatic fish. Educators gained new knowledge through research presentations, fisheries-related curriculum and resources, and networked with agencies and community partners directly involved with sturgeon work.

Under the guidance of Dr. Kim Scribner and his Michigan State University Department of Fisheries and Wildlife research team, teachers learned about sturgeon research and literally got their feet-wet during hands-on experiences, as they:

  • Got up close and personal with sturgeon while touring MSU's streamside sturgeon rearing and research facility on the Black River;
  • Explored river habitats while conducting a stream habitat assessment and monitoring activity; and
  • Waded the river at night with nets in a juvenile sturgeon assessment effort

Workshops were presented in conjunction with the MSU Department of Natural Resources, Michigan Sea Grant, COSEE Great Lakes, and the Northeast Michigan Great Lakes Stewardship Initiative. Contributing program partners included Sturgeon for Tomorrow (Black Lake Chapter), Huron Pines, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, and Michigan Dept. of Natural Resources Fisheries Division. Teacher Ben Braymer, Quincy Elementary School, made a video of the experience and shared it on YouTube:

Other partners in the workshop led by Dr. Scribner were:

  • John Bauman, Research Technician at MSU's Department of Fisheries and Wildlife
  • Brenda Archambo - Sturgeon for Tomorrow
  • Anjie Bowen - U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
  • David Smith and Joe Jarecki - Huron Pines, Board of Directors
  • And the article editor James Kimmel from the site