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MN Zoo Teams up with Local Minnesota Schools

Science+teacher+Suzanne+Kehret+exhibits+mussels+that+are+friendly+to+the+native+ecosystem.
Science teacher Suzanne Kehret exhibits mussels that are friendly to the native ecosystem.

Science teacher Suzanne Kehret exhibits mussels that are friendly to the native ecosystem.

courtesy of Suzanne Kehret

courtesy of Suzanne Kehret

Science teacher Suzanne Kehret exhibits mussels that are friendly to the native ecosystem.

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The state of Minnesota is home to forty-eight native species of mussels. However, twenty-eight of these species are either endangered, threatened, or of special concern according to the Minnesota Zoo.

Mussels serve as an important part of aquatic systems as they filter impurities out of water. They are also a vital food source for other species including otters, heron, and some species of fish according to the Minnesota DNR.

This is where the Minnesota Zoo is stepping up to help make a difference. The zoo launched their “Show me your mussels” challenge to capitalize on two resources that are vital in spreading the word and helping educate others, social media and the teens who use it.

The rules of the contest are simple, High School students create original digital media campaigns to inform the public about the impact of water quality on native mussels. Each campaign contains a link to the “Show us your mussels” website. From there, viewers then have the opportunity to vote for that school. The school that has the most votes at the end of the three-week voting period will be declared the winners and receive an all expense paid field trip to the Minnesota Zoo.

Orono High School’s AP Environmental Science students are among the schools participating in the contest.

“This project excites me because it provides an activity to apply our in-classroom learning to the outside world, and it would be awesome to win a trip to visit the zoo” senior Serena Laing said.

Support Orono High School by completing the two question survey at http://mnzoo.org/mussels-challenge/. You can submit your vote for Orono once a day up until Feb. 28.

 

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The student news site of Orono High School
MN Zoo Teams up with Local Minnesota Schools