FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – Two of the Beatton Community 4-H club’s members were in Truro, Nova Scotia earlier this month competing at the 4-H Canada Science Fair.
Sisters Kyra and Kayli Taylor each entered 4-H’s science fair with projects that they have both been working on for several years. 16 year-old Kyra is already a veteran in scientific research. Having competed in science fairs since Grade 4, Kyra brought forward an extension of the project she worked on last year, that of the increase in yield of seven different sprouts in a horse’s diet when grown hydroponically. Building on last year’s project, Kyra grew the top four species from last year’s results before getting them nutritionally analysed to see which could support the diet of horses of various ages and genders. Kyra says that she was inspired to work on equine health after her sister’s horse came down with chronic obstructive pulmonary disorder caused by mould spores in hay.
13 year-old Kayli meanwhile went into the competition with a project that she’s been continuing for three years now. Kayli’s project looked at the issue of erosion, specifically in areas where logging operations take place. She looked at whether wood chips on a soil surface would help reduce the amount of erosion during rainfall, using wood chips from the OSB plant and comparing the results from slopes of 0 degrees, 25 degrees, 50 degrees, and 75 degrees. According to her results, the amount of erosion on a slope covered in chips was only two grams of material, while the bare slope saw 85 grams of material eroded. Kayli says that she did the research to see whether logging companies could reduce erosion, by chipping wastewood and spreading it onto surfaces instead of burning it or leaving it in piles.
The scope of both young scientist’s projects impressed the judges at Dalhousie University, where the competition was held. So much so, that the two were chosen along with three other 4-H members to represent the club at the Canada Wide Science Fair in Regina starting May 14th in Regina. Qualifying for the national science fair is in credibly difficult, with less than one percent of competitors qualifying. Though the two have already qualified for the weeklong science fair, both Kyra and Kayli will be putting their projects on display at the regional Science Fair at North Peace Secondary School on April 11th.
Just before the science fair at NPSS, the Peace River Regional 4-H Showcase will take place April 8th at the Fort St John campus of Northern Lights College. The showcase will feature 4-H members from the North & South Peace districts competing in the 4-H at Regional Communication. The event is also open to the public, with current members there to offer information on the club, and how to sign up.