Fall 2018 Newsletter

Submitted by Webmaster on Fri, 10/19/2018 - 11:36

Welcome to Jaclyn Robidoux of Kittery, Maine, recently appointed Marine Extension Associate. Based in the Portland area, Robidoux will be establishing connections with the various stakeholders involved in Maine's seaweed resources.


EDUCATION HIGHLIGHTS

Three UMaine graduate students are part of a Sea Grant-funded team studying multiple aspects of rockweed ecosystems. Ph.D. student Hannah Webber is studying the effects of harvesting on rockweed “architecture.” Elliot Johnson is studying the birds that use rockweed as habitat, and Hannah Mittelstaedt is looking at the invertebrate community. We recently spent a day in the field with Webber and researcher Jessica Muhlin from Maine Maritime Academy.

Marine phytoplankton are the inspiration for a new mobile application and educational game launched by University of Maine assistant professor of new media and intermedia Gene Felice and Jennifer Parker at University of California Santa Cruz, with a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts and support from Maine Sea Grant. Phyto Heroes explores phytoplankton as a scientific and artistic research subject through an interactive game system designed for third through fifth grade students and beyond, supplemented with 10 downloadable lesson plans for instructors. The goal is to illustrate how environmental factors such as pH, temperature and nitrogen levels affect the ocean.


OUTREACH & EXTENSION HIGHLIGHTS

Natalie Springuel recently presented on the Mapping Ocean Stories project at the annual meeting of the Oral History Association in Montreal.

Again this year, Kristen Grant is working with the Workforce Housing Coalition of the Greater Seacoast to coordinate a community design workshop to provide a forum for discussion of future housing needs in Southern Maine. This year's workshop is being hosted by the Town of Kittery and will look at possible options for redevelopment of a parcel in the town's Foreside district.

The Alliance for Maine's Marine Economy (Alliance) is a diverse network of organizations dedicated to a vibrant seafood economy for Maine. Alliance investments in infrastructure and capital equipment range from Saco to Beals Island. A forum on November 8 will bring Alliance members and representatives from the 17 projects (enabled by public and private funds) together to share information, lessons learned, and Alliance priorities.

The September newsletter from the Maine Ocean and Coastal Acidification Network features information from the latest science forum and updates from members. A meeting at the State House with Maine legislators and select lawmakers from around New England to discuss creating an Action Plan is planned for November 29.


RESEARCH HIGHLIGHTS

NOAA Sea Grant announces the award of $1.4 million in grants to the University of Maine for two projects to further advance the development of a sustainable marine and coastal aquaculture industry in the United States. Heather Hamlin, Deborah Bouchard, and Ian Bricknell of the Aquaculture Research Institute will research an integrated approach to addressing sea lice control in the commercial culture of Atlantic salmon. A team led by Damian Brady and Emmanuel Boss of the University of Maine School of Marine Sciences was awarded $692, 216 for a project to inform sustainable aquaculture development with water quality data, building on their previous Sea Grant project using satellite data for siting oyster farms.

NOAA has funded the project “Optimizing production and products for scallop aquaculture” under the Saltonstall-Kennedy grant program. Damian Brady of the School of Marine Sciences and Dana Morse of Maine Sea Grant and Cooperative Extension will work with members of the fishing and aquaculture industry to identify and address bottlenecks in the sea scallop aquaculture production process. “We are very excited to work with our growing network of partners to advance cultured scallops as a profitable industry in Maine (and elsewhere) and a compliment to Maine’s wild scallop fishery,” said Brady. Preliminary research supported by Maine Sea Grant, EPSCoR’s Sustainable Ecological Aquaculture Network (SEANET) and Research Reinvestment Funds helped Brady and Morse secure the award from NOAA.

Sea Grant researcher Richard Wahle’s study of juvenile lobster habitat in deep water featured in UMaine News, Portland Press Herald, and Down East Magazine.


EVENTS

20 October | Acadia Science Symposium | Bar Harbor

26 October | Regional Association for Research on the Gulf of Maine | Portland

26 October | Coastal Conversations : Tourism and Economic Development in Downeast Maine | WERU

30 October | International Year of the Salmon Greater Atlantic Region Launch | Boston

9-11 January 2019 | Northeast Aquaculture Conference & Expo | Boston

28 March 2019 | Maine Water & Sustainability Conference | Augusta

14 June 2019 | The Beaches Conference | Kittery

Ongoing | Lobstering & The Maine Coast Exhibit | Maine Maritime Museum


PUBLICATIONS & MEDIA

Maine Sea Grant 2017 Annual Report

The case of the missing mussels in Maine Boats, Homes & Harbors.

Culturing eels and scallops, part of Maine Public Series, Aquaculture's Next Wave.

More on farmed scallops in Civil Eats.

Monitoring Maine's estuaries in The Working Waterfront

September's Coastal Conversation on Maine clams: What is causing their decline and how do we bring them back?