High School Research Projects 

Woodcock Nature Center is looking for local high school students who want to do research projects on our property! This is an excellent opportunity for students looking to gain valuable college resume builders, and developing scientific skills! Do not pass it up if you’re interested in majoring in the field of science!


We already have projects underway, but you can also create a study about whatever interests you! There is no obligation on our end. Just an opportunity for you to practice the scientific method to discover the answers to what inspires you! All you need is to come with a question about something in nature. Our educator Tommy McCarthy will be there to help you along the way!

This is a FREE OPPORTUNITY for anyone in grades 9-12

If you’re interested, send an email to Tommy McCarthy at tmccarthy@woodcocknaturecenter.org and describe the question you have or project you might want to do. If you don’t have an idea, We can help you zero in on what might work best for you!

Volunteer service hours through this program can contribute to earning the Presidential Volunteer Service award. To learn more click here


Current Studies

Invasive Phragmites Mitigation -- Phragmites is an invasive plant in Connecticut. Now it is taking up a lot of wetland habitat space and contributing nothing back to the environment. What impact does cutting down the phragmites stems have on the local population density of the species, and can we find a way to use this plant to human's benefit? 

This Project is Currently Accepting Students!

Krithika Natarajan - 2021

Henry Levitt - 2021

Lia Florio - 2021

Molly Christel - 2021

Jack Sullivan - 2020

Vernal Pool Study – Help WNC monitor the health and productivity of our vernal pools on the property. Measure biodiversity, population density, water quality and more! These pools are highly productive and important parts of our ecosystem and it benefits WNC greatly to monitor their health!

This project will resume in Spring 2022

Natasha Ring - 2021

Henry Levitt - 2021

Kai Harris - 2021

Katie Chan - 2021

Conor Bendett - 2020

Spencer Ogden - 2020

Jack Sullivan - 2020

Butterfly Migration - Do you ever wish we could track their movement to know where they are migrating to? We are doing just that here are WNC!

Tara Slovinski - 2021

Hydroponics - Benefiting from the symbiotic relationship between plants and animals, we are using water from the snapping turtle tank to grow food to feed our vegetarian animals at the nature center. How do the plants effect the water quality in return?

Kai Harris - 2020

Molly Bluestein - 2021

Trail Camera Study – There are many species of animals on the Woodcock Nature Center preserve. Many we see, and many we don’t. Trail cameras help us to keep track of who is coming and going when we are not around, and how it changes throughout the year! This project helps WNC learn about the biodiversity of our ecosystem

Peter Gutstein - 2019

Alice Ding - 2021

Emerald Ash Borer Traps -- Our precious Ash trees are being attacked by an invasive species called the Emerald Ash Borer. At WNC, we looked into different variables including color and smell and their effectiveness as lures for emerald ash borer traps. 

Jason Hartnett - 2020

Tree Population Density -- How many trees are in our forest? How many of each species are in our forest? Are some species found more in one location than another? What is the ​common species in our forest? Through the use of quadrats and tallying, we can estimate the total number of trees at Woodcock Nature Center and find answers to the rest of those questions as well! The answers may surprise you!