Our Director for Research, Dr. Damian Brady published a paper along with Dr. Robert Steneck and former graduate student, Jennifer McHenry (lead author) titled, Abiotic proxies for predictive mapping of near-shore benthic assemblages: Implications for marine spatial planning. In this paper researchers identified important habitat variables and spatial gradients that correlate with abundance, diversity, and commercial value of species assemblages in the Gulf of Maine using a remotely-operated vehicle (ROV).
Between the head of tide above Bangor to where it widens into the bay at Searsport, the Penobscot River shifts from a flowing freshwater waterway banked by cedar and pine to a brackish, wave-lapped marsh with a rocky shoreline. In this estuary, salt concentrations fluctuate as the winds and tides push sea water and sediments back and forth.
This year I had the privilege to travel to the Netherlands as part of my sabbatical research on the topic of stakeholder engagement in community planning for flood defense. The process included interviews with 15 Dutch practitioners from all levels of government, as well as private contractors, community groups and non-profit organizations. The result was 23 hours of audio recordings for me to work through in search of common themes.
Effects of temperature and ocean acidification on larval lobster development – UMaine graduate student, Jesica Waller, along with Dr. Rick Wahle and colleagues published a paper on the joint effects of ocean acidification and rising temperature on larval lobster development. Their results suggest that elevated temperatures associated with projected end-century warming trends cause larvae to develop faster but also induce physiological stress, leading to increased mortality rates.
Along the coast of Maine are places where, twice each day, rivers flow backwards and then forwards in an everchanging diorama of freshwater, saltwater, rollocking rapids and tranquil calms. These are the eight “tidal” or “reversing” falls, found where rivers and bays make a narrow passage to meet the sea.
NOTE: This blog was written by Thew Suskiewicz, a graduate student at Université Laval in Quebec working on a Sea Grant funded project with Dr. Robert Steneck
The following story on Signs of the Seasons: A New England Phenology Program was published on the NOAA Education and Outreach Facebook page on August 9, 2016.