How your science teacher may be spreading invasive species
As many as 1,000 differrent organisms are used in lessons - then released into wild
Aug 7, 2012
Potential invasive species may get a helping hand from an unlikely source: science teachers, a new study indicates.
The researchers found science teachers used as many as 1,000 different organisms in their lessons, including many known or potentially invasive species such as crayfish, the waterweed elodea, mosquito fish, amphibians and red-eared slider turtles.
The study involved a survey of nearly 2,000 teachers in Florida, New York, Indiana, Illinois, Oregon, Washington, California, Connecticut, British Columbia and Ontario, as well as interviews with curriculum specialists, focus groups involving 84 teachers and information from biological supply houses.
The researchers found that while 25 percent of science teachers indicated they released their organisms into the wild after their lessons, fewer than 11 percent participated in planned release programs in which the organism is let go at a designated site.