University of Calgary

ENSC 502 Student Research Reports 2019/20

In the fall of 2019, Dr. Norman and Dr. Gailer from the University of Calgary‚Äôs Environmental Science program invited the Ghost Watershed Alliance Society to speak to their ENSC 502 students. GWAS's Executive Director, Marina Krainer,  presented to these undergrads on the State of the Watershed Report and she addressed both the recommendations and gaps. From this starting point, the students were tasked with completing a major group research project related to the ecosystem function of the Ghost Watershed. Thus, began a fruitful partnership.

Several weeks went by as students sorted out their topics and group members. Calls for mentorship started to come in October and research in the field began in November. The Ghost Watershed Alliance Society and other community members had the opportunity to work with these motivated, enthusiastic, and well-organized groups on a variety of topics including field studies on carbon sequestration in wetlands, groundwater quality, surface water quality, and lichens as air quality bioindicators.

Throughout the winter months, groups worked on data analysis and finalized their reports. After presenting their results to their peers, professors, and the Ghost community during an online Zoom session in April 2020, students submitted their posters, presentations, and final papers to faculty, who then made these available to the Ghost Watershed Alliance Society. GWAS would now like to share this work with you. Click on the link below to access student work:

ENSC 502 projects - Ecosystem Function in the Ghost

Here are the research project topics and titles that can be found at this link:

Air Quality

Sulfur and Nitrogen Oxides in the Ghost Watershed: A Dispersion Model of Industrial Point Source Emissions

Forest Fragmentation

Are We Cutting It? Quantifying Forest Fragmentation and Land Use Impacts in the Ghost River Watershed


Ghost Watershed Baseline Groundwater Study


Establishing Lichens as Bioindicators of Air Quality to Determine Anthropogenic Impacts in the Ghost Area

Mountain Pine Beetles

Risk Assessment of a Mountain Pine Beetle (Dendroctonus ponderosae) Infestation in the Ghost River Watershed, Located on the Eastern Slopes of the Canadian Rocky Mountains


An Assessment into Stream Sedimentation from Off-Highway Vehicle (OHV) Trails and the Potential Impacts to Fish Populations in the Ghost Watershed

Social Values

Message Framing in Social Media: How Understanding Public Perceptions Can Be Used to Increase Public Engagement in the Ghost Watershed

Surface Water

Determination of Fecal Coliform Sources and Surface Water Quality in Waiparous Creek within the Ghost River Watershed


The Key to Carbon Capture is Right Beneath Our Feet: the Carbon Storage Potential of Wetlands in the Ghost Watershed


The Interdisciplinary Nature and Necessities for the Management of Feral Horse (Equus ferus caballus) Populations in the Ghost Valley Watershed

S. Fritz

GWAS Education Coordinator

Lichen credit Sharlene.jpg
Lichen credit Sharlene.jpg
Surface Water credit Cal.jpg
Surface Water credit Cal.jpg
Surface Water credit Sharlene.jpg
Surface Water credit Sharlene.jpg
Wetlands credit Sharlene.jpg
Wetlands credit Sharlene.jpg