UNN researchers take part in the expedition "Floating University of the Volga Basin-2017"
The third expedition "Floating University of the Volga Basin" has started from Nizhni Novgorod. In the course of this expedition supported by a grant from the Russian Geographical Society, young scientists will study the Gorky reservoir water and the surrounding areas of the Volga under the guidance of experienced mentors. This project is the most important part in a series of events focused on the revitalization of the Volga Basin in the framework of the Year of Ecology in Russia. The expedition is carried out on board the training vessel of the Volga State University of Water Transport "Petr Andrianov". The concept of the project is based on a new, integrated approach to assessing the ecological status of the waters of the Volga Basin. Researchers will investigate the whole range of water characteristics: hydrological (current, waves), hydrochemical (pollution with oil, metals, salts, nitrates), and hydrobiological (phyto- and zooplankton), as well as the state of shores and forests that affects the watercourse.
The objectives of the project are to provide specialist training to students and postgraduates, to foster the environmental culture of the population and to popularize the natural heritage of Russia. Taking part in the expedition are researchers and students of the Volga State University of Water Transport, IAP RAS, Lobachevsky University, Moscow State University, Minin Pedagogical University of Nizhni Novgorod, Roshydromet institutions and other partner organizations.
During a similar expedition in 2016, a unique discovery was made – a research team of Lobachevsky University detected in the Cheboksary and Gorky reservoirs a new invading species – American rotifer, Kellicottia bostoniensis. This type of zooplankton was first discovered near Boston in the United States more than a century ago. Such invading species can have a negative impact on the existing ecosystem of reservoirs.