Keyano College, with funding support from Environment Canada


  • To address concerns about the potential impacts of industrial development, including oil sands mining activities, in the Peace-Athabasca Delta and elsewhere in northern Alberta and the NWT.
  • To assess the health of frog populations at varying distances from disturbances including oil sands operations. The health of frogs can serve as an indication of the larger ecosystem.
  • To monitor the level of contaminants such as mercury in frog tissues and pond water because contaminants may enter the food chain through frogs


  • We are examining relationships between the health of frog populations and distance to different kinds of disturbance, especially oil sands mining and upgrading activities.
  • Wood frogs are a good species to study because they are widely distributed in the boreal forest and are sensitive to changes in the environment.
  • Tissue samples are collected from frogs to test for disease, and to test for levels of contaminants. Frogs are examined for physical deformities and other indications of poor health.
  • Water samples are collected to test for general water quality, and to test for the presence of contaminants.


Numerous study sites in northeastern Alberta and southeast Northwest Territories.


Ongoing fieldwork is planned, including annual visits to the Peace-Athabasca Delta / Wood Buffalo National Park area.

Project Lead:

Danna Schock
Keyano College
8115 Franklin Avenue
Fort McMurray, AB T9H 2H7

Phone: 780-791-4816
E-mail: danna.schock@keyano.ca
Website: dannaschock.blogspot.ca