Bermuda Field Course, 2018

30 April 2018

Nine students headed off to Bermuda for the annual field course to explore modern and ancient carbonate rock environments.

Bermuda 2018 class picture 

Acadia and Queen’s students hard at work in the lab at the Bermuda Institute of Ocean Sciences.

Swimming at vadose-phreatic boundary.  Mixing corrosion in action!  

Dr. Melissa Grey, Curator of Joggins Fossil Institute, lectures about ecospace and how sedimentologists can apply it to understand biochemical facies.


Field school 2018

25 April 2018

Term is over so now it is time for field school. Day 2 saw the crew heading out to Fall Brook to map the Glass Sand, surrounding shale and the unconformity on the Meguma Supergroup. Shorts and bare arms? Whatever happened to "it always snows at field school"?

The whole group still happy on Day 2 at Fall Brook. No rain yet...

Day 4: Environmental Science field school spent the day studying soil structures. After digging pits in the woods, they sampled various layers and performed settling experiments. In place of mechanical stirrers, 20 minutes of vigorous shaking was needed:

Laura Evans, Hannah Arsenault-Gallant and Nicole Kirkpatrick demonstrating the technique.

Alexis Mackey, Yekyung Seo, Christine Crognale, Jennifer Sexton, Ben Henger and Julia Crews having fun with it too.

Meanwhile the Geology students were exploring relations between Triassic sandstone and Meguma slate in Elderkin Brook. Thursday's rain raised water levels a bit, but didn't seem to deter students from measuring attitudes. 


Photo by Jonathan Publicover


Environmental Science grads in Toronto

23 April 2018

Greetings from Toronto! 

Yesterday, Emma, Sonya and I went out for brunch together, and thought we would send you a hello from Toronto! The three of us are currently living and working in the big city. Amanda is schooling at the University of Toronto, Emma is managing a non-profit business organization promoting sustainable investment practices, and Sonya is on a work term for her MBA in the downtown Toronto business district. It’s been wonderful catching up and exploring different parts of Toronto with Acadia pals. At the same time, it is hard to believe that 1-2 years ago (although feels like yesterday) we were in small-town Wolfville, and are now in North America’s fourth largest city! We are all doing well and enjoying this new phase of our lives, although we frequently reminisce about our days at Acadia and living in Wolfville. We are looking forward to visiting the East Coast sooner rather than later. :) 

We hope that all is well in the Earth and Environmental Science Department and that you are getting some spring sunshine in the valley. 

Cheers,
Amanda, Emma & Sonya


Shelburne-Yarmouth field trip

23 April 2018

Every year students completing the Igneous Petrology or Metamorphic Geology courses have the opportunity to put their learning into action on the South Shore field trip. Led this year by Rob Raeside, the group visited locations in the Lahave River-Green Bay area where they met up with renowned photographer Peter Barss from West Dublin, who has been regaling his grandsons with stories from the rocks, appropriately annotated by Rob Raeside!


Photo by Peter Barss: Patrick Henger, Kyle Kucker and Crystal Smith learning about sediment dewatering process by the Green Bay outcrops of the Goldenville Group.

From the Green Bay area, the group proceeded south to the higher metamorphic grade rocks of Shelburne County, culminating in migmatites of Cape Sable Island and the intrusive rocks of the Shelburne and Barrington Passage plutons. Overnighting in Yarmouth, the second day saw them proceed along the western shore of Nova Scotia looking at the younger rocks of the White Rock Formation, although access to the outstanding outcrops at Cape Forchu had to be replaced by examination of the Cape Forchu Harbour breakwater as the Leif Erikson trail was closed for filming a movie.

The trip was blessed with sunny weather and expansive beaches. Here students are examining the slate-tuff contact on the beach at Cape St. Mary.


Is it field work if it's under water?

11 April 2018

Ian Spooner is spending early April in the  Whistler-Pemberton Valley, BC coring lakes as part of a country-wide investigation into atmospheric lead deposition.  

In this photo he is coring Lost Lake near Whistler, a lake that may also hold a record of fire history, an important component of ecological management in the region.


Progress on Huggins

10 April 2018

Progress continues on the renovations to Huggins Science Hall. As of the end of winter term, much of the frame of the building is evident, with final cladding up on much of the south face and east face brickwork complete. We eagerly await the final push-out of the corridors (and disappearance of piles of construction materials!) which will give us much appreciated space around the building.


Earth Ring Ceremony 2018

7 April 2018

Fifteen Acadia students attended the annual Earth Ring ceremony sponsored by Geoscientists Nova Scotia and held at the end of the winter term at Dalhousie University.

Pictured above (click for larger image): Gabriel Sombini, Cody Reeves, Scott LaRue, George Challenor, Kirklyn Davidson, Dylan Wyles, Alicia Moning, Chad Stines, MaryAnn Kavanagh, Dr. Cliff Stanley, Reid Cameron, Sarah Dunn, Allison MacDougall, Heather McGuire, Jackson Malone, Brendan Vibert


End of Year Banquet

28 March 2018

As the school year comes to an end, ESSA (Environmental Science Students Association) organized a final banquet for the department, inviting both ESSA and Fletcher Club members to join. Over 50 students, professors and guests gathered in Clark Commons for the event.


photo by Anthony Chu

ESSA invited three alumnae to address the gathering - Monica Reed, Emily Walker and Kaycee Morrison clearly enjoyed reminiscing about their time at Acadia, revealed some their subsequent peregrinations, and offered words of advice to those still in programs.



photo by Anthony Chu
Emily Walker, Kaycee Morrison, Monica Reed - guest speakers, but great providers of sound advice about moving from Acadia to the world of work!

At the event, students who made their mark (mostly in a good way!) in the past year were also recognised:


photo by Anthony Chu

Left to right, back row: Heather McGuire, Harcourt Cameron Award, Maurice Haycock Scholarship, GAC-PDAC Logan Prize; Kirklyn Davidson, AGS Environmental Geoscience Award at AUGC; Maggie MacDonald, best poster prize at Science Atlantic Environment conference; Jackson Malone, Rupert MacNeill Book Prize; Rachel Clarke, Linda Lusby Award. 
Front row: Dylan Wyles, Bancroft Scholarship; Max Chipman, CSPG Prize for best student presentation at AUGC, Rupert MacNeill Prize for best oral undergraduate presentation at AGS conference; Philicity Byers, Pound Family Scholarship.
Not present: Laura Bonga, Irving Scholarship; Liam McLaughlin, Dunn Environmental Scholarship; Crystal Smith, MacNeill Scholarship, MAC Prize; Garrett Velkjar, MacNeill Scholarship.


Special thanks to Anthony Chu for always being there with his camera!


Acadia students at Science Atlantic (Environment) conference, 2018

19 March 2018

Congratulations to all eleven Acadia students who attended the Science Atlantic (Environment) conference at Mt. Allison University on 16-18 March, accompanied by lecturer Sara Klapstein. Three of the seven awards went to Acadia presenters:

- First place poster: Maggie MacDonald, "Identification and impact in commercial onion in Nova Scotia"
- Second place graduate presentation: Eileen Haskett, "Response of intertidal communities on a tidal gradient to high and low suspended sediment concentrations"
- KC Irving Environmental Science Centre Award: Brock Burgess, "Nest density of orange-belted bumble bees (Bombus
ternarius)"

The whole Acadia delegation managed to get together for a group photo:

Surprisingly little green considering it was the 17th March!


Preparing for the Bermuda field school

13 March 2018

Students in the GEOL 4303 course, Carbonate Sedimentology Field School, are practising their underwater skills in the Acadia pool, to be ready for the exploration of the ocean in Bermuda at the end of April.


Photo: Pam Frail


AGS Colloquium in Truro

7 February 2018

The 44th Colloquium and Annual General Meeting of the Atlantic Geoscience Society were held at the Holiday Inn, Truro, Nova Scotia, on February 2 to 3, 2018. Nearly 200 participants enjoyed a full and diverse program pushing the boundaries of geoscience in all its branches. As usual, the event was well attended by industry, government and university participants, including 4 professors and 26 students from Acadia, and many former Acadia students.

Acadia undergraduate students at the closing banquet and awards event (photo: Anthony Chu).

This year’s Colloquium started on Friday morning with two well-attended, day-long workshops: (1) Your Career and Public Reporting - A QP Short Course for Students (& others) by Amy Tizzard, Acadia grad of 2003, and sponsored by Geoscientists Nova Scotia and (2) Subsurface Methods - How to use and interpret drill-hole data and other subsurface data for both industry and academia by Robin Adair, outgoing president of the AGS. Poster displays started late Friday afternoon and remained available to view until late Saturday afternoon. Three concurrent sessions ran Friday evening: (1) Rocks, maps, and tectonic models, organized by Sandra Barr and adjunct professors Chris White and Deanne van Rooyen; (2) Advances in Assessing Arctic Geohazards; and (3) a General Session on Igneous rocks, mineralogy and mineral deposits. A highlight of the exhibits was the display of the recent compilations of new geological maps of Southwest Nova Scotia by Chris White, and Cape Breton Island, featuring decades of work by Sandra Barr, Chris White and many Acadia students and faculty.

Sandra Barr and Chris White with the newly published map of Cape Breton Island (photo: Anthony Chu).

Saturday’s events started early with several concurrent sessions including: Records of Environmental Change from the Atlantic Provinces and Beyond, organized by Ian Spooner and Dewey Dunnington; Basin-forming Processes during Supercontinent Assembly: New insights from the Devono-Permian Record of Atlantic Canada; The Meguma Terrane: its place in the Appalachian Orogen and Beyond; Paleontology and Sedimentology in the Maritimes and Beyond; AGS Outreach Innovations: Past, Present and Future; Methane Emissions from Legacy Fossil Fuel Sites in the Maritimes; Petroleum Geoscience on the Atlantic Margin; and a General Session on Techniques in Earth Science.

Several Acadia students gave presentations:

Alex Squires speaking on Middle to Upper Ordovician ironstone of the Western Asturian-Leonese Zone, Spain: coastal upwelling, ocean anoxia, and Paleozoic biodiversity (photo: Anthony Chu).

Baillie Holmes speaking on Application of the paleolimnological method in the environmental assessment of effluent-influenced freshwater sediment: an example from northern Nova Scotia (photo: Anthony Chu).

Heather McGuire speaking on A paleolimnological approach to understanding metal mobility and retention associated with salt-water inundation at Laytons Lake, Nova Scotia (photo: Anthony Chu).

Kirklyn Davidson speaking on Application of the paleolimnological method in the environmental assessment of estuarine sediments in a pulp effluent receiving pond: an example from Northern Nova Scotia (photo: Anthony Chu).

Max Chipman speaking on New insights into a brackish Carboniferous ecosystem through the coprolites of the Joggins Formation, Nova Scotia (photo: Anthony Chu).

Saturday evening was the Awards Banquet and Social where following dinner several prestigious AGS awards were presented in recognition of worthy student presentations and professional accomplishments.

Winners of the student awards (left to right): Matt Stimson, St. Mary's University; Kate Woods, Dalhousie University; Max Chipman, Acadia University;, Taylor Ducharme, University of Ottawa; Steven Rossiter, University of New Brunswick (photo: Anthony Chu).

The Rob Raeside Award for best undergraduate student poster went to Taylor Ducharme (University of Ottawa) and his co-authors David Schneider and Mark Coleman for their poster “Resolving episodes of deformation and hydrothermal quartz precipitation in the Amalgamated Break fault, Abitibi Subprovince, Ontario from microstructural and SEM-CL analyses”  (photo: Anthony Chu).

The Graham Williams Award for best graduate student poster went to Steven Rossiter (University of New Brunswick) and his co-author Bruce Broster for their poster “Portable X-ray fluorescence analysis of terminal grade in basal till south of the Mount Pleasant deposit, New Brunswick" (photo: Anthony Chu).

The Rupert MacNeill Award for best undergraduate student oral presentation was split between two top talks: Max Chipman (Acadia University) and his co-authors Melissa Grey and Peir Pufahl for his talk “New insights into a brackish Carboniferous ecosystem through the coprolites of the Joggins Formation, Nova Scotia,” and Kate Woods (Dalhousie University) and her co-author James Brenan for her talk “An experimental study of the effect of water on chromite saturation in komatiite (photo: Anthony Chu).

The Sandra Barr Award for best graduate student oral presentation went to Matthew Stimson (St. Mary’s University) and his co-authors Andrew MacRae, Randy Miller, Steve Hinds, Nicholas Minter and Zabrina Prescott for his talk “A review of Kinneyia simulans: An ichnotaxonomic approach to wrinkled microbially induced sedimentary structures from New Brunswick, Canada.”

The new Nelly Koziel Award, given to a person who has recently made a significant contribution to geoscience in the Atlantic Provinces, beyond the call of duty, was awarded in recognition of Nelly Koziel, former treasurer of the Society, and long-term AGS volunteer who staffed the sales table at colloquia, the Nova Scotia Gem and Mineral Show and many other events. The inaugural award was made to Nikole Bingham-Koslowski of the Geological Survey of Canada (Atlantic), who ably and assumed the role of treasurer following Nelly’s death last year (photo: Anthony Chu).

Nikole Bingham-Koslowski receiving the Nelly Koziel Award from Lynn Dafoe, AGS incoming president

The Distinguished Scientist Award - Gesner Medal, given to a person who developed and promoted the advancement of geoscience in the Atlantic Region in any field of geology, was awarded to Reginald Wilson (retired from the New Brunswick Geological Surveys Branch) (photo: Anthony Chu).

Reg Wilson receiving the Gesner Medal (photo: Anthony Chu).

After the awards, the guest speaker Deanne van Rooyen (Cape Breton University) gave an entertaining talk entitled “Folds, furs, and flies: Adventures in Northern research” about her exploits in northern Quebec and Labrador.

This was followed by the annual AGS Kitchen Party and open mike, showcasing the instrumental and voice talents of several members of the Mud Creek Boys and other AGS members.

Ian Spooner, Dewey Dunnington and Peter Williams providing a musical interlude (photo: Anthony Chu).