Through data-collection, mapping, and modeling efforts, a collaborative research project has increased clarity about marsh habitat change to inform mosquito control and coastal restoration efforts in New Jersey. The project team developed environmental DNA (eDNA) assays for the most common salt marsh mosquitoes in the Middle Atlantic United States and made major advancements in mosquito surveillance. They also developed outreach materials to inform the public about health risks posed by mosquitoes, including how climate change might exacerbate those risks, and a module for middle/high school educators.
About this resource
These teaching modules for middle and high school educators are focused on the biology, ecology, and impacts of climate change on mosquitoes and their habitats. Student activities include an introduction to environmental DNA (eDNA) and a DNA extraction experiment. These activities were inspired by eDNA analysis techniques used to detect species‐specific mosquito larvae in salt marshes. Students first complete a simple DNA extraction experiment followed by an activity that mimics eDNA sampling methods within different zones of a salt marsh habitat. Both activities include follow‐up critical thinking questions and fulfill Next Generation Science Standards. The modules also provide answer key worksheets, and background information about a related research project, mosquito biology and management, DNA, and eDNA. The modules are best performed with students in the classroom in an in‐person setting.
Interconnectedness of Climate Change and Nuisance Mosquitoes Teacher Education Modules. K. Gannon, November, 2020.