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NRC 100 Environment and Society

Fish ecology and conservation assignment

Types of sources you need to learn about the life cycle of the fish species and the conservation challenges:

  • at least one popular or news article 
  • at least one scientific journal article and
  • at least one other type of source
    (this could be a government report, an NGO or non-profit report, encyclopedia, trade journal, or a book)

Best article databases for fish assignment

For the fish species assignment, these 2 have popular press articles, as well as scientific/scholarly ones.

  • GREENR: Global Reference on the Environment, Energy, and Natural Resources. It groups information by type of publicatione.g., academic journal articles, magazines, newspapers, podcasts, encyclopedia entries, etc.
  • Environment Index - for articles from scientific, legal, and popular journals, 1950s- present.

More scientific literature for fisheries:

Aquatic Science Collection
Journal articles, book chapters, reports, and conference proceedings published in the field of aquatic science, some in full text, 1965-present.

Agricola
Broad coverage of "applied biology" including aquaculture and fisheries. Incluldes journal articles, book chapters, monographs, theses, patents, software, audiovisual materials, and technical reports. 1970-present.

CAB Abstracts
Indexes journal articles and other material on applied biology, including fisheries, from the British Commonwealth
Agricultural Bureaux. 1910 forward.

Other useful databases, specific to general:

Zoological Record - Animal (including fish) research from 1864 forward.
BIOSIS Citation Index - Biology research from 1969 forward.
Biological and Agricultural Index - Research literature from 1984 forward.
Web of Science; Science Citation Abstracts - High impact research in all sciences from 1900 forward. Search by "cited reference."

Tips for effective searching

Tips to find species info


1. Search both common and scientific namesScientific articles may use one, the other, or both.
    Be aware that sometimes the scientific name changes over time!

    Connect them with OR - for example:

      Brook trout or Salvelinus fontinalis

Using OR makes the results set bigger.

2. To find habitat or life history info, link species name with those terms using AND:

      (Brook trout or Salvelinus fontinalis) and
          (habitat or life history)

Using AND makes the results set smaller.


The parentheses ( ) makes the logic work.  If you don't understand how, please ask!


3. Use a wildcard, e.g. the asterisk (*),  question mark (?) or dollar sign ($) to widen your search. Each platform has its own rules. 

     In EBSCO databases, searching the term fish* will find anything starting with F-I-S-H
      including fish, fished, fishing, fisher, fisheries, etc.

Some platforms, including Google/Google Scholar, do this automatically (without a symbol).

4. Use the database tools to narrow a search with many hits - narrow by date, or type of publication (source type), language, or geographic area.

© 2016 University of Massachusetts Amherst.