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Marine Extension Associate Keri Kaczor participates in the New England Sustainability Consortium's Safe Beaches and Shellfish Project (NEST), working with a team of researchers across Maine and New Hampshire colleges and universities.
Northeast Sea Grant Programs are coordinating a regional effort to prevent the Chinese Mitten Crab from becoming established in Gulf of Maine waters.
Tourism and the shellfish industry are both integral components of the Maine economy and way of life. Yet elevated fecal bacteria levels in coastal waters may pose a human health risk, leading to closures of valued beaches and shellfish growing areas.
Formerly known as the Spring Running, the KENNEBEC CELEBRATION is heading into its seventh year as an annual festival geared towards “Celebrating the Spring Running and Life In, On and Along the Kennebec River.” The event is free, family-friendly and typically takes place on the second Saturday in June on the grounds of Old Fort Western and the East Side Boat Launch in downtown Augusta.
Each year, bacterial contamination forces the closure of hundreds of acres of clam flats in southern Maine. These are the same bacteria that can pose a health risk at popular swimming beaches. Fecal coliform and E. coli bacteria are used as indicators that other, more harmful, pathogens may be present in coastal waters. But since wildlife, domestic animals, and humans can all be sources of fecal coliform, it is difficult for managers to identify the exact source of the bacteria.
The goal of this project, led by the Maine Department of Marine Resources, is to conserve and restore wild populations of rainbow smelt (Osmerus mordax), within the U.S. Gulf of Maine watershed. This anadromous fish is listed by the National Marine Fisheries Service as a species of concern as a result of over-harvest, water quality and habitat degradation, inaccessibility of spawning grounds, and possible disease issues.