News from Maine Sea Grant | Winter 2017

In Memoriam

All of us at Maine Sea Grant are mourning the loss of several members of Maine’s environmental science community. Bigelow Laboratory Executive Director Graham Shimmield, who helped guide our programming through his participation on our Policy Advisory Committee, passed away in December. We also will miss Bill Townsend, a longtime advocate for clean water and protector of Maine rivers; Brian Robinson, Sea Grant researcher and archaeologist who helped expand our understanding of the human history of the coastal landscape; and Gordon Hamilton, a researcher with the UMaine Climate Change Institute. Our condolences to their families, friends, and colleagues.



NOAA just released an amended funding opportunity for the Knauss fellowships, which includes an increase in the individual fellowship budgets, a two-week delay in the application deadline, and a few other changes. Additional funding opportunities are available for students and recent graduates.

Sara Randall has joined the Signs of the Seasons team as assistant coordinator. Signs of the Seasons hosted a Northeast phenology workshop in November. Read the report here.


Commercial fishermen and members of fishing families who are interested in diversifying their incomes are invited to participate in the Aquaculture in Shared Waters training course offered by University of Maine Sea Grant and Cooperative Extension, Maine Aquaculture Association, Coastal Enterprises, Inc., and Maine Aquaculture Innovation Center. An introductory meeting about the program is planned for Tuesday, February 7th, at 6:30pm, to be held at the Bryant E. Moore Center in Ellsworth. Program coordinators and instructors will review the curriculum and benefits to participants, including technical information needed to run a successful aquaculture operation. Topics covered include site selection, equipment and husbandry methods, regulation and permitting, farm operations, marketing, working with tourism and culinary sectors, and business and financial management. Aquaculture in Shared Waters, initiated in 2013 with funding from NOAA Sea Grant, is coordinated by Maine Sea Grant and University of Maine Cooperative Extension. The name, Aquaculture in Shared Waters, reflects the fact that aquaculture is but one of the many diverse uses of Maine’s coastline, and that the best results are achieved when sites are chosen carefully, and with due consideration of local perspectives and conditions. For more information about this meeting or the program, please contact Dana Morse at 207.563.8186.
A five-session workshop on strengthening facilitation skills and running dynamic, effective meetings will be held from 1 to 5 p.m. Wednesday, February 1, at University of Maine Cooperative Extension office in Falmouth. Applications are also being accepted for the Community Engagement Academy at University of New Hampshire.
Healthy Beaches Program coordinator Keri Kaczor reports that that U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has approved Maine’s justification to partially integrate new federal recommendations for water quality while continuing to use established policies that have maintained successful public health protection at coastal swimming beaches.
Esperanza Stancioff, along with Sam Belknap and Aaron Strong from UMaine, is working with Maine Lobstermen’s Association and Maine Lobstermen’s Community Alliance to take part in the Maine Lobstermen Leadership Institute. This two‐day workshop is designed for lobstermen and women who want to gain a stronger understanding of the management, science, marketing and business aspects of the Maine lobster fishery.
Read a report on Kristen Grant’s sabbatical research on stakeholder engagement in community planning for flood defense.
Our Coastal Conversations in Acadia Series ended this fall, but the stories will live on for another century as part of the Acadia Centennial Time Capsule to be opened on the 200th anniversary of Acadia and the National Park Service in 2116.

The Maine Sea Grant College Program invites preliminary proposals for research and synthesis projects to be funded in the period February 2018 through January 2020. Through this new request, we seek proposals of two separate categories. First, we seek to fund research proposals that link the scientific capacity of Maine with the needs of coastal stakeholders. Second, we aim to support synthesis efforts that will integrate knowledge from diverse sources to summarize our current understanding of coastal Maine issues, identify gaps in knowledge, and outline future research directions. Synthesis efforts should not include the collection of new data. Assuming no changes in the federal Sea Grant appropriation and the requirements of the non-research components of the Maine Sea Grant program, an estimated $750,000 will be available to support research projects over the two-year funding period. Maine Sea Grant will consider funding proposals from $50,000 to $150,000. Maine Sea Grant intends to fund as many excellent proposals as is possible within budgetary constraints; projects with requested funding below the maximum amount and those that show strong leveraging of funding are encouraged. Due to Maine Sea Grant’s limited resources, total two-year requests over $150,000 in Sea Grant funds (including all direct and indirect costs) will not be considered. Sea Grant funding requires a 50% non-federal match; all preliminary proposals must indicate source and level of available non-federal match. Proposals without sufficient match will not be considered. Preliminary proposals are due Friday, February 24, 2017. Maine Sea Grant is administered by the University of Maine, but the research competition is open to faculty and staff at any public or private research or higher education institution in the state.
Further details, guidelines, and forms

Sea Grant graduate student Nicole Ramberg-Phil writes about using surveillance cameras to observe ecological interactions in a changing climate on the Sea Grant website.

The Call for Abstracts for the 2017 Maine Sustainability & Water Conference has been issued. The conference is scheduled for Thursday, March 30 at the Augusta Civic Center, Augusta, ME. The submission deadline for oral abstracts is Friday, January 20, 2017. Marine and coastal related sessions include Maine’s Changing Foodscape, Shoreland Zoning, Municipal Infrastructure, Land-Sea Connections, Ocean Acidification, Coastal Water Quality, and Wetlands.

Penobscot East Resource Center is hiring an Executive Director.

It’s Maine scallop season! Read about UMaine graduate student and Sea Grant researcher Skylar Bayer’s new project using molecular techniques to detect scallop spawning in the wild.


2017 calendars are available! This year’s calendar features Maine’s 12 species of native sea-run fish, illustrated by Rockland-based artist Karen Talbot. If you have not received one, email us your address and we’ll get one in the mail a.s.a.p.!
Participatory modeling and community dialog about vulnerability of lobster fishing to climate change in Environmental Modeling with Stakeholders: Theory, Methods, and Applications
Penobscot River Restoration in Maine Boats, Homes & Harbors
Seaweed dreaming in Yankee Magazine
A century in Acadia in UMaine Today. The Fall/Winter 2016 issue of UMaine’s magazine also features Sea Grant in stories about the Sea Fellows program at the Darling Marine Center, larval lobster research by Rick Wahle and Jesica Waller, a feature on aquaculture research, the release of the third edition of Public Shoreline Access in Maine, and findings from the “Seafood Links” research project.
Here’s how to buy and store Maine oysters for your New Year’s party in Portland Press Herald, and more on Maine’s oyster choices in Maine Sunday Telegram
Maine Climate and Ag Network at the University of Maine
Connecting Local Seafood and Consumers: Direct Marketing 101 from the National Sea Grant Law Center. NOAA National Centers for Environmental Information
Remember to tune in to WERU-FM for Coastal Conversations on the fourth Friday of the month! Upcoming topics include Health Insurance for Fishermen on January 22. Missed a show? Archives are available.


Attention Writers! The Catch: Writings from Downeast Maine is now accepting submissions of poetry, fiction, and nonfiction for Volume V. Learn more and submit online at Also, our friends at Maine Writers & Publishers Alliance have a full slate of writing workshops scheduled for this winter and spring.

23 January | From frog fungus to smashed dams: Maine science journalism and the (messed up) food chain of news, Mitchell Center Seminar with author and journalist Murray Carpenter | Orono, ME

2-4 March | Maine Fishermen’s Forum | Rockport, ME

16-19 March | Maine Science Festival | Bangor, ME

30 March | Maine Sustainability & Water Conference | Augusta, ME

19-25 April | International Pectinid Workshop | Portland, ME

14 July | The Beaches Conference | Wells, ME

Ongoing | Lobstering & The Maine Coast | Maine Maritime Museum