Native Fish in the Classroom
What is Native Fish in the Classroom?
To assist students in developing an attitude of stewardship toward Louisiana’s natural resources and to provide for them a constructive active learning situation in which students can explore strategies for sustaining our aquatic ecosystems.
- Provide students in grades 6th through 12th with background information on fisheries management, fish biology, protected species, and aquatic natural resources.
- Maintain a classroom-based nursery aquarium in which students grow native, Louisiana fish, paddlefish, from eggs to fingerlings.
- Produce paddlefish that can be used by the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries’ Booker Fowler Fish Hatchery to help manage a protected fish population in Louisiana.
- Assist students in developing an attitude of stewardship toward the state’s natural resources. Students will gain awareness of freshwater ecological systems by helping prevent the loss of a protected fish, benefiting the whole freshwater system.
- Paddlefish spawning cycles coincide with the spring semester of school year
- Paddlefish eggs are large enough to view with the naked eye
- They have distinctive life-stages and develop into fingerlings in about a month and one half
- They are a protected species in Louisiana
- They are a living fossil
How do paddlefish get to the classroom?
- Qualified candidates, 6th through 12th grade science teachers living in Louisiana.
- Candidates will write a letter of intent, attend all workshops, pick up eggs, and return fingerlings to the hatchery.
- The candidate’s school will show support of the teacher and the project
Participation in NFC Includes:
- Workshop For Intensive Training: biology, fisheries management, aquaculture maintenance, importance of native species, and stewardship
- NFC Teachers Guide Book: background, lessons, aquaria setup and maintenance
- Equipment: aquaria setup and supplies
- Support: list of who to contact for help and trouble-shooting
- Early March to Late May
- Teacher will get eggs (possibility of Fieldtrips to see propagation)
- Rearing of the fish to Fingerling size
- Teacher and students return fingerlings to LDWF pre-selected, pre-approved riverine habitat
For More Information, contact:
Chris Conner at (318) 487-5336 or [email protected]