May 2015 Newsletter

A Closer Look #150

AWRI Summer Student Interns

Pictured above, left to right:  Tina Scott; Drew McWilliams; Brittany Jacobs; Gabrielle Thelen; Emily Luke; and Nick Weber.

One of the joys of summer at AWRI is our student intern program. This summer, we welcome 6 student interns to the Institute. These students are funded by a variety of sources and work with different principal investigators.

Tina Scott is being funded in part through the D.J. Angus-Scientech Educational Foundation; she will be working with Janet Vail and Carl Ruetz.   

Five interns are being funded through the R.B. Annis Foundation: Drew McWilliams will be working with Rick Rediske; Brittany Jacobs will be working with Al Steinman; Gabrielle Thelen will be working with John Koches; Emily Luke will be working with Kevin Strychar and Mark Luttenton; and Nick Weber who will be working with Bopi Biddanda.

A special welcome to all of these bright, young researchers for their hard work and dedication, and a heartfelt thank you to our generous funders!

LMC Activities

Bopi Biddanda and Janet Vail coordinated on a job shadow visit for a Grand Rapids high school student on May 20.

Delilah Clement, graduate student working with Al Steinman, passed her qualifying exam on May 2.

John Koches hosted the 12th Annual Grand River Forum in Grand Rapids on May 1.

John Koches participated in the West Michigan Sustainable Partnerships “Ignite” event held at the Eberhard Center on May 18.  John assisted in the planning of this event. 

Al Steinman served his last year on the Board of Directors for the Society for Freshwater Science (SFS), but he was asked to stay on as Chair of the Sponsorship and Development Committee.

Janet Vail helped facilitate the annual Michigan Project WET Community Water Festival in Big Rapids on May 13.

Presentations & Publications

 AWRI staff are in bold, graduate students are denoted with a *, and undergraduate students are denoted with **.


Al Steinman is a co-author on a paper that was published in Ecological Applications:
Smith, S.D.P., P.B. McIntyre, B.S. Halpern, R.M. Cooke, A.L. Marino, G.L. Boyer, A. Buchsbaum, G.A. Burton Jr., L.M. Campbell, J.J.H. Ciborowski, P.J. Doran, D.M. Infante, L.B. Johnson, J.G. Read, J.B. Rose, E.S. Rutherford, A.D. Steinman, and J.D. Allan.  2015.  Rating impacts in a multi-stressor world: a quantitative assessment of 50 stressors affecting the Great Lakes.  Ecological Applications 25:717-728.

(Presenter listed first)

AWRI was represented at the Society for Freshwater Science (SFS) conference in Milwaukee, Wisconsin from May 17 – 22.  Personnel in attendance were: Delilah Clement, Mark Luttenton, Mary Ogdahl, Carl Ruetz, Al Steinman, Maggie Weinert, and Graeme Zaparzynski.
Presentations at the conference included:
Dean, E.** and M. Luttenton.  Poster.  A re-evaluation of aquatic caloric densities using bomb calorimetry.
Janetski, D.J.***, C.R. Ruetz III, M.J. Breen*, and S.L. Kohler.  Poster.  Macroinvertebrate beta diversity among stream micro-habitats.
Morsches, S.M.P.**, D.J. Janetski*, and C.R. Ruetz III.  Poster.  Spatial patterns of fish assemblages in Lake Michigan drowned river mouths.
Ogdahl, M.E., A.D. Steinman, and M. Weinert.  Oral.  Seeking Clarity: how a public/private partnership intends to dramatically improve conditions in a historically hypereutrophic lake.
Steinman, A.D., M.E. Ogdahl, M. Weinert, and N. Gillett***.  Oral.  Combining results from field observations and experiment to inform management strategies for a heavily used lake with lots of problems.

AWRI was represented at the International Association for Great Lakes Research (IAGLR) 58th annual conference held in Burlington, Vermont from May 25 - 29.  Personnel in attendance were: Anthony Weinke and Andrya Whitten.
Weinke, A.* and B. Biddanda.  Oral.  Time-series changes in productivity and hypoxia linked to storms and runoff in Muskegon Lake - a Great Lakes estuary.
Whitten, A.L. and A.S. McNaught.  Oral.  A mesocosm investigation of the direct effects of quagga mussels (Dreissena rostriformis bugensis) on Lake Michigan zooplankton.

Mark Luttenton gave a presentation to the Hottentotts fishing group on the movement of Brown Trout in the Au Sable River on May 2.

Syndell Parks presented at the Michigan Lakes & Streams Convention at Boyne Mountain on May 2.
Parks, S.* and R. Thum.  Oral.  How genetic methods can influence the way we assess watermilfoil.

Rick Rediske presented to the Muskegon Lake Watershed Partnership on the results of lab analysis of benthic macroinvertebrate monitoring data, and presented a proposed monitoring program for delisting on May 28.

Al Steinman gave a presentation on Muskegon Lake restoration during a cruise on the research vessel W. G. Jackson to Congressional Staffers on May 2.

Al Steinman gave a presentation on AWRI and the Michigan Blue Economy and a tour of AWRI’s Field Station to GVSU’s Grand Forum at the Lake Michigan Center on May 7.

Al Steinman gave an invited presentation on possible watershed funding opportunities to the Frey Foundation trustees in Grand Rapids on May 7.

Kevin Strychar was invited by Cara Ocobock, Assistant Professor of Biomedical Sciences at GVSU, to give a presentation titled “Climate Change: Why it isn’t a myth perpetuated by bad science” at a Science On Tap event in Grand Rapids on May 14.

Brian Zuber, graduate student working with Rick Rediske, presented about his project to identify and prioritize restoration areas in the Lower Grand River watershed to the Grand Forum on May 1.

Awards & Recognition

Courtney Cave, undergraduate who worked with Kevin Strychar for two summers, received the designation “Undergraduate Research Scholar” on her transcript and was named “Biomedical Sciences Graduate of Distinction”.  She received this recognition as a result of her outstanding research on diseases of an important crustacean in the Great Lakes – Diporeia – with Dr. Strychar.  She published her research in the International Journal of Biology.

Grants & Contracts

Carl Ruetz received a $20,000 award for 2 years to conduct fish monitoring at Veteran’s Park, Muskegon as part of habitat restoration of Muskegon Lake associated with Veteran’s Park.

Al Steinman received a $45,000 award for 2 years to monitor water quality as part of the Bear Creek hydrologic reconnection project.

Al Steinman received a $50,000 grant from the Mott Foundation to assess water management in Michigan.

News & Events

AWRI in the News

“Connections for the STEM Classroom: freshwater security in a changing world”
Interchange Newsletter, GVSU Regional Math and Science, May 2015
Bopi Biddanda and one of his graduate students, Nicole Horne, co-authored a paper about the use of biosand filters in Ghana.

“Aquatic habitats and invasive species workshop”
Muskegon Conservation District newsletter, May 2015
The article is about an upcoming cruise on the W. G. Jackson on June 20, sponsored by Muskegon Conservation District, Shoreline Naturalists.

“AWRI researcher gets major grant to teach research science”
GVNow, (a publication of Grand Valley State University), May 5, 2015
The article is about the National Science Foundation (NSF) Research Experience for Undergraduates in Quantitative Environmental Science and Technology (REU QUEST) grant AWRI received by Jim McNair and Kevin Strychar.

“Science on tap set for Speak EZ”
GVNow, (a publication of Grand Valley State University), May 13, 2015
Kevin Strychar spoke about Climate Change at a Science-on-tap on May 14.

“Silver Lake friend group to meet”
Ludington Daily News, May 20, 2015
GVSU is mentioned as a partner with USGS on a diagnostic evaluation of Silver Lake.  Findings will be discussed at a meeting on June 13.

“Festival celebrates Grand River”
GVNow, (a publication of Grand Valley State University), May 22, 2105
The article is about a water festival happening on May 30 in Grand Rapids.  AWRI is one of the partners that will have educational activities for participants.

LMC Events

LMC Events

May 6
Northern Trails (Kent County) 5th graders visited the Annis Educational Foundation Classroom for hands-on activities and took a vessel cruise on the W.G. Jackson.  

May 7
GVSU’s Grand Forum held an event at the LMC for their members.

May 11, 13, and 14
Shoreline Elementary (Muskegon County) 2nd graders visited the Annis Educational Foundation Classroom for hands-on activities.

May 13
A “Growing up Wild” Educator workshop sponsored by the DNR was held in the MPR.

May 15
Students from Oakview Elementary (Muskegon County) enjoyed a program in the Annis Educational Foundation Classroom after their salmon release at Heritage Landing.

May 18
Alto Elementary (Kent County) 4th graders visited the Annis Educational Foundation Classroom for hands-on activities and took a vessel cruise on the W.G. Jackson.

May 19, 20, and 21
Whitehall Middle (Muskegon County) 8th graders visited the Annis Educational Foundation Classroom for hands-on activities and took a vessel cruise on the W.G. Jackson.

May 20
Muskegon County’s non-profit organization, “The Arc”, held an event at the LMC.

May 22
Southwood Elementary (Kent County) 4th graders visited the Annis Educational Foundation Classroom for hands-on activities and took a vessel cruise on the W.G. Jackson.

May 26, 27, 28, and 29
Daisy Brook Elementary (Newaygo County) students visited the Annis Educational Foundation Classroom for hands-on activities and took a vessel cruise on the W.G. Jackson.

May 28
The Muskegon Lake Watershed Partnership held a public meeting at the LMC.

Page last modified July 1, 2015