A COLLABORATIVE PROJECT WHERE STUDENT LEARNING MEETS LOCAL CONSERVATION NEEDS
Boulder County Parks and Open Space Foundation: The Boulder County Parks and Open Space Foundation generously donated $30,000 to pilot this native species recovery effort.
Colorado Parks and Wildlife (CPW): Colorado Parks and Wildlife has listed the Northern Redbelly Dace as a Level 1 Species of Concern (S1) since 2015. CPW coordinated the removal of gamefish from Webster and were important partners in providing adult fish, technical information, and community outreach meetings to support this project. CPW also has provided funds to Boulder County as well as Ocean First Institute for the Northern Redbelly Dace Recovery Project.
Boulder County Parks and Open Space: In March of 2020, Boulder County Parks and Open Space approved Webster Pond to become a native fish refuge and has since provided funding for the Northern Redbelly Dace project to continue in the summer of 2021. The agency also facilitates much of the field work related to the project for restoration and releases of the Northern Redbelly Dace into Boulder County waterways.
Ocean First Institute (OFI): OFI is the main coordinator in the Northern Redbelly Dace Recovery Project that seeks to act as a bridging organization between student volunteers and partner organizations that want to be involved in the project. OFI manages the logistics of breeding, rearing, and releasing Northern Redbelly Dace into waterways, as well as follow-up monitoring of these populations.
Innovation Center of St Vrain Valley Schools: The Innovation Center is a hub for students, educators, business partners, and the greater community of Longmont to engage in science through offered courses, work experience, and research opportunities. Students from the Innovation Center have participated in fish rearing, field work, and other aspects of the Northern Redbelly Dace recovery project since it began in 2020.
University of Colorado Boulder: A team of graduate students in the Master’s of the Environment (MENV) program at CU Boulder partnered with Ocean First Institute to assist in the Northern Redbelly Dace Recovery Project of 2021. The team took part in fish rearing and fish care in the classroom, training new volunteers, field site monitoring, as well as creating tools to aid in project logistics that increase capacity of collaborative management and community outreach.
Lefthand Watershed Center: The Left Hand Watershed Center works to protect and restore watersheds for people and the environment using a collaborative and science-based approach. One of the Watershed Center’s priorities is reconnecting and restoring fish habitat. As part of this, the Watershed Center is introducing regionally isolated native fish species, including the Northern Redbelly Dace, into newly restored habitat in the transition zone of the watershed to help sensitive fish species adapt to climate change conditions.
Lyons Middle/High School: Lyons Middle/High School students and teachers have worked with the Ocean First Institute and other students at the Innovation Center to rear Northern Redbelly Dace in the classroom.
Colorado State University: Colorado State University's Fish, Wildlife, and Conservation Biology program in the Warner College of Natural Sciences conducts research on improving habitat connectivity for native aquatic species of Colorado. This research is important to the future of endangered species like the Northern Redbelly Dace.
Denver Zoo: The Denver Zoo became a partner in 2021 upon donating a grant to support students involved in remote data collection from release sites. The funds were used for supplies and equipment set up in the field in order to transmit data back to the classroom in real time for students to monitor the site.
Northern Redbelly Dace Recovery Project A collaborative species conservation partnership Email: email@example.com