Grant Spotlight: American Eel Environmental Education

As a part of our Round 1 2023-24 grants, Kerry Bolton, the science teacher at the Landisville Education Center, was awarded a Hempfield Foundation grant of $700 to fund a small-scale environmental education opportunity provided by the Susquehanna River Basin Commission. Through this program, students not only learn about the American Eels, they also help raise them by feeding them, cleaning algae from the glass on the tank, and then will assist in the redistribution of them back to the Susquehanna River system above the four dams in the spring. The grant allowed for the purchase of a tank, tank stand, filter system, lights with timers to simulate day and night hours, food delivery system for weekends and holidays, and an aquaponics portion. The aquaponics portion demonstrated how nitrates and phosphates are filtered out by the plants and used to help them grow.

Hempfield’s preschool students also had the opportunity to visit the room and learn about the eels.

“It makes me proud that we are also doing our part by helping the Susquehanna River Basin Commission repopulate the Susquehanna River with the American eels that had started to dwindle there. [Students] also get to learn how certain plants can grow without soil and raise them inside the classroom.”

— Kerry Bolton

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