D-Y Students Begin Environmental Study with Friends of Bass River

DENNIS – More than 100 students from Dennis-Yarmouth Regional High School have begun hands-on scientific research of Bass River as part of a new partnership with a local organization.  

In a working partnership between D-Y Regional High School and Friends of Bass River, more than 100 students will use the river as an extended classroom, researching a number of different qualities and properties of the water in relation to the surrounding ecosystem.

More specifically, students will be measuring water quality parameters of salinity, nitrates, phosphates, dissolved oxygen and temperature.

“We’re testing the water for nitrogen, phosphorous, dissolved oxygen, the saltiness of the water. We’re also doing plankton toes and looking at the plankton, and then just looking at any fish if we catch them. So, just kind of getting an understanding of the health of the river,” said D-Y Ecology Teacher Carl Depuy.

The Friends of Bass River says the goal of the program is to enhance the students’ “intellectual curiosity and create more environmental advocates.”

The students are in grades 10 through 12, with varying interests in scientific fields, such as biology or physics. Depuy says the program allows students to directly experience ecological field studies, something the classroom cannot do.

“You can’t mimic this in the classroom. You can’t teach kids how to get out and do sampling and do environmental work without actually getting out to the environment and doing it,” Depuy said.

Volunteers from Friends of Bass River will be supporting the teachers and their students throughout the program.

A member of Friends of Bass River has donated funds to cover the cost of all bus transportation to and from the five different sampling sites along the river.

By TIM DUNN, CapeCod.com News Center 

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