At the 4-H Canada Science Fair, finalists showcase their projects, have the chance to meet with their peers, exchange ideas, and take part in activities and workshops that foster their knowledge and interest in STEM.
The 2023 4-H Canada Science Fair, was held at Olds College of Agriculture and Technology, March 9-12, 2023.
Left to right: Mac D, Alexandra O, Michael Trevan, Mark N, Trent K
Winners of the 4-H Canada Science Fair will move on to the Canada-Wide Science Fair in May 2023, where they competed against the best and the brightest from across Canada!
Mac D., British Columbia
An Innovative Approach to Ammonia in Poultry Operations
Ammonia in poultry operations can have negative economic, ethical, health, and environmental effects. Apart from ventilation, current methods to remove ammonia from the air include the bedding additives Alum and Zeolite, which can have negative affects on chicken and human health, respectively. Research suggests that both Prussian Blue and Biochar may reduce ammonia levels through adsorption. Neither Prussian Blue, nor Prussian Blue + Biochar, have been tested as an ammonia control additive for chicken bedding. The objective of this project is to determine if Prussian Blue or Prussian Blue + Biochar can be used as a commercially viable bedding additive to adsorb ammonia from chicken bedding.
Mark N., Alberta
A Comparison of Natural and Commercial Corrosion Inhibitors on Metals
Corrosion of metals is a common and costly occurrence in a wide variety of industries, including agriculture. The use of corrosion inhibitors to reduce the speed at which corrosion occurs is a common practice. Traditionally corrosion inhibitors have been non-botanical in nature, usually toxic, some containing heavy metals and not environmentally friendly. Recently, there has been a focus on botanical corrosion inhibitors that are inexpensive, renewable, environmentally friendly, nontoxic and most importantly effective inhibitors of corrosion. Building on my 2022 project judges’ feedback I selected the most effective natural inhibitor, added a new promising natural inhibitor (tomato skins) and a commercially available inhibitor for comparison on two metals and two corrosive solutions.
Alexandra O., Saskatchewan
Long Term Carbon Storage in Grazed Grasslands vs Croplands
Globally, grasslands hold 30% of the worlds carbon in the soil. Cultivated lands were studied for the carbon storage loss, in comparison to grasslands. All 5 samples were 0-15cm and was a mix of clay, brown and black soil in the samples. The long term grazed areas had 2 times more carbon and nitrogen. The cultivated lands have shown that there is a very significant loss of carbon and nitrogen, adding to effects of climate change and atmospheric carbon dioxide. This study has concluded that cattle have beneficially altered carbon stocks by grazing and preserving the land.
Trent K., Ontario
Invasive and Native Plant Growing Study
Invasive plants are commonly perceived as pests because they outcompete native plants. This experiment seeks to explain why they outcompete native plants. An equal number of native and invasive seeds were collected from a forest in Southern Ontario. They were planted in soil from the ground from the same area and many more invasive plants sprouted than native. When the experiment was repeated in commercial soil from a seed store, an equal amount of native and invasive plants sprouted. The invasive plants have an equal germination rate, suggesting that another factor influences the success of invasive plants, and they must go through an entire life cycle to gain the advantage.
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