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Center for Quantitative Fisheries Ecology:Outreach


In May of 2018, the CQFE technicians were invited to attend the STREAM Expo Day at St. John the Apostle Catholic School in Virginia Beach where they taught students from Kindergarten through 8th grade about how to age fish using otoliths, scales, and operculum.

Emily with kids at st john Apostle Chathic school

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Big Blue Camp

In June of 2018, the Student Rec Center at ODU hosted a Big Blue day camp and invited the CQFE to set up a table to teach the campers all about ageing fish using otoliths, scales, and operculum. Click on the Gallery to the left to view photos of the campers learning from the CQFE staff.

Fishing Community

We have developed a web application to help fishermen determine the ages of the fish they catch by measuring them. The results represent years of statistical data collected by Old Dominion University and the Virginia Marine Resources Commission. You can find a link to it on the sidebar of each CQFE page, or you can click the link button below.

Fish Age Estimator
James and Chris

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Wildlife Rescue

Wildlife Response Inc. accepts many of our unused research fish as food for animals they rehabilitate. Most recently, an otter had to be treated at their center and, while it couldn't hunt fish for itself, the CQFE could provide it with all the fresh fish it could eat while it recovered. The photos are provided by Suzanne McBride at Wildlife Response Inc.

Food Donation

Each year, the CQFE collects thousands of pounds of fresh fish, in order to help monitor the health of Virginia's fish stock and conduct research. After the removal of hard parts like otoliths, scales, and opercular coverings, the CQFE donates all fresh fish to food charities. Last year, the CQFE collected over 5,700 pounds of fish - almost three tons! Current recipients include the Salvation Army, the JCOC, the Union Mission and Wildlife Response. Links to their websites can be found on the sidebar of any page on the CQFE website.

When 1500 lbs. of fish were confiscated one weekend, the CQFE staff stayed at the ageing lab after hours to process them for donation.

If your organization would like to participate in our food donation program, please contact us.


Previous Outreach Effort

Training Teachers

Elementary, middle, and high school teachers from Newport News, Culpeper, Chesapeake, Virginia Beach, Williamsburg, and Norfolk visited CQFE to learn how to teach their students about fish during the summer of 2002 as part of their in-service program with the Chesapeake Bay Foundation.

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Kid's Day

Every September, the Boy's and Girl's club of America, in cooperation with regional organizations, hosts a Kid's Day to celebrate our nation's youth. In 2004, we were invited to set up a table at our local Kid's Day event to teach kids about some of the science that supports our robust fishing industry. Click on the gallery to view pictures from the event.

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Salvation Army Award

In 2002, the Salvation Army recognized our outreach efforts with a Volunteer Service plaque. It was presented to our former master's students Eric Robillard and Roxanne Carter. Eric is the current head of the Fisheries Biology Program with the Population Biology branch of NOAA, while Roxanne is a NOAA Commissioned Corps Officer. Click on the gallery to the right to view photos of the event.

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ODU Sea Camp

For many years, the OES department at ODU hosted a summer Sea Camp. Children were taught about the Ocean, Earth, and Atmospheric sciences in a fun, hands on environment. The CQFE hosted workshops in the ageing lab to let students have a fist hand look at some of our ground breaking research in fisheries ecology.

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Woodrow Wilson Science Club

The CQFE hosted a day of exploration for Portsmouth's Woodrow Wilson High School Science Club. Students got first hand experience in processing, removing otoliths from, and ageing fish.

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