APB Sponsored CPD Events

One of the main priorities of the APB is to ensure our membership throughout British Columbia is provided timely, relevant training opportunities, workshops and webinars. Our mandate is to ensure competency in the biology profession, practice and related decision making processes. Please check our Calendar to see upcoming training, workshops and webinars provided by the APB and affiliated organizations. If you have a suggestion for a CPD training course, please contact the APB office


Courses – Spring 2018

Natural Processes for The Restoration of Drastically Disturbed Sites

Date: April 4, 2018
Time: 9:00 am – 5:00 pm (Lunch provided)
Location: Westin Wall Centre, 3099 Corvette Way, Richmond, BC
Registration fee:  $165

REGISTER FOR THIS WORKSHOP

Natural processes have been restoring natural disturbances since the beginning of time. This full day workshop will explore how these natural processes can be applied to the restoration of sites that humans have disturbed to greatly reduce the cost of restoration. Traditional reclamation treatments can be costly and fail to generate the ecological goods and services that were lost during the disturbance of the site.  This workshop will look at how disturbed sites can be re-integrated with the natural successional processes that operate to create productive, self-sustaining ecosystems. We will look at common constraints (filters) to recovery – erosion, compaction, low nutrients, lack of propagules, herbivory, etc. and how natural systems solve these problems. We will explore practical methods of applying these solutions to anthropogenic disturbances often at a fraction of the cost of some current reclamation practices. Soil bioengineering techniques for the treatment of steep and/or unstable sites will be presented. The course will include a brief overview of monitoring and maintenance strategies.

Who should attend? Those engaged in restoration planning and implementation for drastically disturbed sites including large mines, upstream oil & gas sites, transportation corridors and other significant disturbances.

Instructor

David F. Polster, R.P. Bio. is a plant ecologist with almost 40 years of experience in vegetation studies, reclamation and invasive species management. He graduated from the University of Victoria with an Honours Bachelor of Science degree in 1975 and a Master of Science degree in 1977. He has developed a wide variety of reclamation techniques for mines, industrial developments and steep/unstable slopes as well as techniques for the re-establishment of riparian and aquatic habitats. He is the past-president (third term) of the Canadian Land Reclamation Association. He is the treasurer for the B.C. Chapter of the Society for Ecological Restoration and is on the board of the International Society for Ecological Restoration. He served as the alternate mining representative on the board of the Invasive Species Council of B.C. for 9 years.


Using Science Communications Principles to Improve Science Technical Writing and Visualization

Date: April 7, 2018
Time: 9:00 am – 12:00 pm
Location: Westin Wall Centre, 3099 Corvette Way, Richmond, BC
Registration fee:  $85

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Science communication is like a translation service. You can take a fieldwork description, academic paper, or a research talk intended for one audience and translate it to another audience in a different medium. But where do you start? This three-hour session will help participants identify audience, craft outputs that resonate, and strategize how to share your science with the people you want to reach. There will be plenty of opportunities to practice and get feedback using examples from your own work.

Instructor

Josh Silberg Josh loves practicing and teaching science communication in all forms as the Science Communications Coordinator for the Hakai Institute—a BC-based NGO that focuses on coastal scientific research from icefields to oceans. He holds a Master’s of Resource and Environmental Management from Simon Fraser University and has researched everything from dolphins in Australia to whale sharks in the Philippines to rockfish on the BC Central Coast. Josh has written science and policy-related articles for various online publications. More information can be found at www.joshsilberg.com

 


A Primer on Monitoring and Inventory Best Practices for Amphibians and Reptiles

Date: April 7, 2018
Time: 1:00 pm – 4:00 pm
Location: Westin Wall Centre, 3099 Corvette Way, Richmond, BC
Registration fee:  $85

REGISTER FOR THIS WORKSHOP

Amphibians and reptiles are notoriously difficult to survey, because they are small and cryptic. They also live and move through heterogenous environments and have complex life histories with developmental steps and behaviours that respond to seasonal weather patterns in ways that are hard to predict. The province of BC has published a number of Best Management Practice (BMP) documents to give guidance on the management and survey techniques that apply to amphibians and reptiles. The Resources Inventory Standards Committee (RISC) documents for pond-breeding amphibian surveys provides lots of information, but are more than 20 years old. A recent BMP document on mitigation salvage (published in 2016) gives guidance on translocation and monitoring techniques to manage amphibian and reptile populations on construction sites in a manner that meets provincial regulations.

This two-part workshop is a continuation of a workshop that was held during the 2017 APB-AGM concerning Best Management Practices (BMPs), inventory, and research techniques for amphibians and reptiles in BC. A follow-up survey was completed by APB members in December 2017. Results from the survey will be presented during the first part of the workshop and attendees will have an opportunity to discuss, learn, and exchange knowledge about provincial regulations and BMPs. Part 2 of this workshop will give an introductory primer on research and inventory techniques for amphibians and reptiles, including a backgrounder on scientific reasoning in sampling design, randomization methods, and software (e.g., QGIS, r-stats).

Instructor

Mark D. Thompson MSc, MEd, RPBio.   Mr. Thompson obtained his BSc at the University of Northern British Columbia (UNBC) in Wildlife Biology in 1998. He went on to complete his MSc at the University of Calgary in 2003 where he studied phylogeography of long-toed salamanders. In 2014 he completed his MEd at UNBC in Multidisciplinary Leadership with a focus on biophilia and ecoliteracy education using amphibian ecology as a teaching focus. He also ran a non-profit amphibian conservation charity from 2008 until 2012. Mr. Thompson has been working at a consulting firm since 2012 as a senior ecologist. He has managed a number of research and construction mitigation projects concerning amphibians and reptiles in northern BC.


Using Organized Reasoning to Improve Scientific Technical Writing

TBA

This workshop will give you ideas and tools to help you write technical materials such as letters, reports, or impact assessments so they are more effective and more transparent for your audiences, and are (to some extent) faster and cheaper for you.

Scientific technical writing constantly uses reasoning to reach conclusions. That process is called ‘argument’—meaning assembling a series of reasons, leading to conclusions, targeted for a specific audience. We address two sets of tools. The first provides principles and practices for creating clearer arguments relevant to different kinds of technical documents. The second shows tools for bringing the steps of argument into the written text of your documents.

The workshop shows how written technical documents contain common errors in their arguments and weaknesses in their writing. Participants practice assembling evidence and reasons for several different kinds of argument found in technical documents. We practice several steps, and introduce some computer-based tools, that show how to bring those improved arguments into technical report writing. We discuss how several organizations implemented these steps in their professional practice. At the end, participants will have a revised approach to planning, preparing and writing scientific technical reports that they can use on the job.

Instructor

Dr. Glenn Brown is an ecologist, environmental manager and educator with over 25 years experience. He has worked on baseline studies, environmental planning, impact assessment, restoration and ecosystem services projects. In recent years he’s emphasized sharing tools of organized reasoning. Based in Vancouver, Canada, Glenn is an independent consultant and teaches in the Masters of Environment and Management program at Royal Roads University. More information at www.glennbrown.ca.


Statistics Refresher for Biologists: in “R” Software

TBA

Many scientific studies are full of statistical jargon, tables of averages and other statistics, and results of statistical tests which purport to prove a certain hypothesis. The purpose of this course is to review some of the basic sampling and experiment designs used by ecologists and to understand exactly what can and cannot be extracted from a set of data. With the advent of modern statistical packages, the analysis of data is fairly easy, but it is far too easy to get nonsense results. This course will also review common pitfalls in the analysis of data.

Instructor

 

Dr. Carl Schwarz is a faculty member at Simon Fraser University. His research interests are in Statistics and Ecology, particularly in capture-recapture methods to study animal populations and environmental impact studies.

 

 


Systematic Conservation Prioritization using “Marxan 2.0”

Date and location:  TBA

Marxan is a conservation software tool that, depending on the particular target and constrains of input data, produces spatial reserve systems for conservation purposes. It is the most popular systematic reserve software used in the world, and has been applied to conserving the Great Barrier Reef, Australia, Farallon Islands, Callifornia, and East Kalimantan, Indonesia, among other regions.

 See Past APB Sponsored CPD Events