BANFF – The Bow Valley Naturalists next talk will present an interesting perspective on a familiar creature – the Banff Springs snail.
Endangered, the snail is the subject of study by University of Calgary PhD student Brenna Stratford. Stratford is studying the science behind saving the snail and recently completed her master’s degree in ecology and evolutionary biology investigating genetic factors influencing the persistence of this particular endangered species in partnership with Parks Canada.
As a result, Stanford’s passion for the inclusion of genomics into conservation management was born. Genetics is the study of the functioning and composition of single genes, whereas genomics addresses all genes and their inter-relationships in order to identify their combined influence on the growth and development of an organism.
With more threatened and endangered species identified each year due to the loss of biodiversity throughout the world, the questions around how to decide which ones are a priority for conservation have arisen. Questions like this can be aided by the integration of genomics into conservation decisions.
In her talk, Stanford will explain how genomics can be applied to conservation with highlights from her research of the Banff Springs snail.
The free monthly speakers series is held on Tuesday (Feb. 26), at the Banff Senior’s Centre – 110 Bear St. – at 7:30 p.m.