Massabesic Middle School’s Search for the New England Cottontail

    A special guest post from Pat Parent of Massabesic Middle School!

    Students at Massabesic Middle School continue “student scientist” efforts with fieldwork into the winter season. Students on the Aroostook team are working with Melissa Brandt of York County Soil and Water Conservation District and the Maine Inland Fisheries and Wildlife and US Fish and Wildlife Service to search for the New England Cottontail (NEC).

Fall 2012 - A long and talkative season!

    After last spring, we didn’t think any new records could be set. You all proved us wrong! This was the longest and most talkative fall field season yet with 1315 comments made and the latest observation published on December 12. A total of 584 species observations were published, including the first Vital Signs sightings of Heterosiphonia japonica, winter moth, and European oyster.

A record breaking spring

    The Vital Signs community is setting new participation records this spring!

    523 species observations and 16 projects (including 22 species ID cards) were posted. 710 supportive and informative conversations were had by students, educators, species experts, and citizen scientists!

    Highlighted here are some of the great observations that were published, and some of the participants who are making an impact. Keep in mind that there were MANY great observations, projects, and comments contributed. Be sure to check out the new additions to the Best of Vital Signs page!

GMRI MSSM SERC: Acronyms galore add up to good times!

Guest blog entry from SuperStar!

    I had the chance to go catch up with students from the Maine School of Science and Mathematics for a weekend of learning and sharing about research careers here in Maine. The students left the potato fields of Limestone, and I left the bustling metropolis of Portland, and we met up at the Schoodic Education Research Institute along with scientists from the National Park Service, Bigelow Laboratory, Jackson Laboratory, and GMRI....

In the Field Fall 2011 - Inter-Island Conversations

    Jamien and Amy are two teachers in the Vital Signs community. Their students have been hard at work exploring their local ecosystems. I'll give you some hints, and see if you can guess where these student scientists are hard at work.

Vital Signs 2011 Contest Winners

    Great entries were submitted for our Faces of Vital Signs Photo Contest and our Create and Share Project Contest. Thanks to all for sharing your work!

    Congratulation to our winners!

Massabesic hits the editorials


    Flip to the Letters to the Editor in today's Portland Press Herald and you'll find a Massabesic student wishing us all an invasive-free holiday season! Here's the direct link:

Here's Elizabeth's letter (thanks for the plug, Elizabeth!!):
Invasive wreaths need careful disposal....

Who's behind the 722 fall observations?

    722 species observations were contributed this fall by students, educators, and citizen scientists! The Vital Signs community would like to recognize and thank the teachers and students from these schools for their incredible data and project contributions during the field season. One species observation from each school is highlighted below.

A big jump in commenting!

    I was messing around with our website reports this afternoon to see what I might be able to learn from a little playful graphing. I had an inkling that student commenting was on the rise, but was shocked (pleasantly!) to see this particular upward trend...

Belgrade Workshop

    On the sunny and brisk Saturday that was November 5, 2011, a community came together to learn about their local Vital Signs mission.

    Check out the video blog to see what we did!

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