The ongoing mission to preserve aquatic life in Northern BC’s marine environment is a huge group effort, and one of the people at its heart is biologist Caitlin Smith. As the Prince Rupert Port Authority’s Environmental Technician, she contributes in many ways to preserving the North Coast’s marine habitats, especially when it comes to monitoring for invasive species. Each year, the Port participates in the Aquatic Invasive Species Program. A major component of this is the Settlement Plate Program, which monitors for invasive tunicates and bryozoans. From June through September, Smith helps deploy dozens of plates at marinas around Prince Rupert, Port Edward, Metlakatla and Lax Kw’alaams. At the end of the three months, the plates are brought to the surface and analysed for potential invasive species. Work is also underway in monitoring for European Green Crab in the North Coast.