Category Archives: Past Events

Why Do We Explore – Online Workshop

Join the College of Exploration and NOAA’s Ocean Explorer for the free online teacher workshop, Why Do We Explore, October 5-16, 2009.  This is the second workshop in a series of teacher professional development opportunities focused around NOAA’s new ship, the Okeanos Explorer.  Scientific keynote presenters and education facilitators will work with participants to delve into the benefits of ocean exploration targeting climate change, energy, human health and ocean health.  Interact with scientists, converse and share classroom applications with other educators, and find a wealth of multimedia resources.  The workshop will introduce the first in a series of Leader’s Guides for Classroom Explorers Why Do We Explore? with associated exploration lessons and hands-on activities.  The workshop will be available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Join the workshop

Gulf of Maine Area-Census of Marine Life Newsletter

July 29, 2009

CALENDAR: Gulf of Maine Symposium – Early registration ends July 31st

Early registration ends Friday, July 31st for the Gulf of Maine Symposium, to be held in scenic St Andrews by-the-Sea, New Brunswick, October 4-9, 2009.

GoMA will host a one-day workshop on Biodiversity in the Gulf of Maine on Monday, October 5th.  We invite members of the science, management and conservation communities to join us.

The symposium is sponsored by the Regional Association for Research on the Gulf of Maine, in collaboration with COMPASS, Department of Fisheries and Oceans – St. Andrews Biological Station, Gulf of Maine Research Institute, and the Gulf of Maine Area – Census of Marine Life.

RESEARCH HIGHLIGHTS: Isles of Shoals (NH), Platts Bank (ME), Cobscook Bay (ME) and Discovery Corridor (Canada)

Here are a few highlights of summer research activities from our partners:

Leading a team of students at Shoals Marine Lab, marine archaeologists Nate Hamilton and Ingrid Brack (photo) found evidence of prehistoric Native Americans on Smuttynose Island, Isles of Shoals, New Hampshire.

Studies of biological hotspots – areas teeming with marine life – continue at Platts Bank, an off-shore bank 30 miles east of Portland, Maine.

Sampling of intertidal and nearshore species continues in Cobscook Bay, near the Maine/Canadian border.

A two-week cruise is underway in the Discovery Corridor, from the shores of the Bay of Fundy to the deep sea.  A 2008 National Geographic video shows you what this Canadian project is all about.

PUBLICATIONS: Recent papers on ecosystem dynamics

Gulf of Maine researchers have published two recent papers on changing ecosystem dynamics and fish communities using decades and centuries worth of data:

Using fish survey data from 1963 to the present, Peter Auster and Jason Link co-authored Compensation and recovery of feeding guilds in a northwest Atlantic shelf fish community (April 30, 2009, Marine Ecology Progress Series ).  The abstract begins “Disturbance by fishing activities in marine ecosystems has resulted in significant shifts in the distribution, abundance and diversity of fish communities.” Dr. Auster (photo) is a key contributor to the GoMA Census of Marine Life.

Based on historic records dating back to 1630, a team of researchers led by Stefan Claesson and Andy Rosenberg published their final report on Stellwagen Bank Marine Historical Ecology (2009, Gulf of Maine Cod Project, UNH). Dr. Rosenberg is a project leader for the Historical Marine Animal Populations of the Census of Marine Life. Recent guest lecturers and historians, Karen Alexander and Bill Leavenworth, contributed to the report.

Congratulations to all on their significant contributions to our understanding of the Gulf of Maine ecosystem.

EDUCATION NEWS: Student video wins national recognition

A poignant and well-produced video, Our Oceans, Our World , by high school students Eric Kao and Jorie Heilman of Lexington, Mass. captured the admiration of regional and national judges.  The winning video will be on display at the Smithsonian’s Ocean Hall throughout the year.  The winner and runners-up can be viewed on our website – kudos to all who participated in the contest.

Living on the Ocean Planet video contest is a project of the National Ocean Sciences Bowl, initiated by GoMA and co-sponsored by the Census of Marine Life.

Editor’s Note

A special thanks to Census of Marine Life scientist, Dr. Michael Sinclair of the Bedford Institute of Oceanography in Dartmouth, NS for his recent interview for our blog, Celebrating Darwin.  In Part 1, Reflections on Darwin , Dr. Sinclair discussed how scientific theories come to be, and in Part 2, Music and Darwin,  how music inspired – and was inspired by – Darwin.

As part of our ongoing celebration of Darwin’s 200th birthday and the 150th anniversary of Origin of Species, we invite colleagues to contribute to our blog in the coming months.  If interested, please contact Susan Ryan.

Pass it on

If you know someone who may be interested in receiving this newsletter, you can easily forward up to five copies at once.

Sunset Whale Watch to Benefit Humpback Whale Studies at PCCS

Provincetown Center for Coastal Studies (PCCS)  invites you to a whale watch on Friday, August 7, 2009, 5:30-8:30 p.m.
Complimentary wine, beer & picnic supper–$100 all inclusive. Free one-year membership for newcomers to PCCS!
Reserve by calling 508-487-3622, ext. 104 or e-mailing
All proceeds directly benefit the Humpback Whale Studies Program, which has been studying and protecting the whales you watch for over 30 years

Free Family Beachcombing Program (Rhode Island)

Join University of Rhode Island Marine Outreach Scientists on a summer day at low tide for a two-hour beachwalk. Explore Fort Getty, one of Rhode Island’s unique coastal beaches. This program gives young people a special chance to have their questions answered about the plants, animals, and minerals found on the beach.  Saturday, August 8 from 2:00 – 4:00 p.m. This  beachcombing event is free and open to the public.

Pre-registration is required.  To register, please call the Office of Marine Programs at 874-6211.  Groups meet at the Fort Getty beach pavilion and all children must be accompanied by an adult.

Oyster River Festival, Durham, New Hampshire

The Oyster River Festival, Jackson’s Landing, Durham New Hampshire, Sunday, July 26, 2009, 2:00 PM til dusk.

As part of its mission to protect the Piscataqua Maritime Region through education and action, the Gundalow Company—in collaboration with the town of Durham, New Hampshire —invites Durham residents and the public to celebrate the Oyster River and enjoy an evening of songs featuring folk singer, Bill Staines. The festival runs from 2:00 PM until dusk – Bill Staines starts at 6:00 PM.

Bring a picnic, enjoy the river view, hear some steel band music, and tour the gundalow with special activities for children all afternoon. The UNH Marine Docent Chantey Singers will perform onboard the gundalow at 5:00. Learn how to get involved in the ongoing efforts to protect the Oyster River and the Great Bay Estuary.

Free and open to the public.  For more information: (603) 433-9505 |

Provincetown Center Hosts Benefit for Seal Studies

The Provincetown Center for Coastal Studies (PCCS) will host an afternoon seal cruise to support research on local seal populations, Sunday, July 19 at 3 p.m. aboard Rip Rider V, from Ryder’s Cove in Chatham, with support from Monomoy Island Ferry. Lisa Sette, seal biologist and director of the PCCS Seal Studies Program, will guide this special two-hour cruise aboard the brand new 40- seat Rip Ryder V.  Guests will cruise around Chatham Harbor, and the seal habitats found there.  The cruise will benefit the PCCS seal research program, which conducts research to better understand Cape Cod’s seal populations.

Advance reservations required; $50 per person; to reserve, contact Jan Young, 508.487.3622, ext. 104;  On the day of the cruise, meet at Stage Harbor Marine, Lake Street, Chatham by 2:30 p.m. for shuttle to Ryder’s Cove.

The Provincetown Center for Coastal Studies, founded in 1976, is a nonprofit organization dedicated to preserving and protecting marine mammals and ecosystems in the Gulf of Maine and beyond, through scientific research, education, public policy initiatives and management strategies.

Meet the Ocean Explorium Team in New Bedford

Come find out what the Ocean Explorium at New Bedford Seaport is all about! As part of the Ocean Voice speaker series,  the staff of the Ocean Explorium will give visitors an inside look at who the people behind the scenes are, what they do, and how they do it. Meet executive director and shark biologist Mark Smith; education coordinator and Massachusetts Marine Educators grant recipient Abbey Spargo; volunteer coordinator and fisheries biologist Jen Costa; Connecting Oceans Academy co-director and educator Jack Crowley; and curator and aquarium design specialist Warren Gibbons. Moderators are Simone Bourgeois and Arthur Dutra from Sea Lab, a public school in New Bedford.

Tuesday, July 14    7-8 PM
Admission: $3 adults, $2 seniors/children

The Ocean Explorium recently opened full time for visitors.
Daily hours are 10 AM to 4 PM.  Come see the aquarium exhibits, marine life, Science on a Sphere®, and the Discovery Bay children’s activity center. Admission during regular visiting hours is $6 adults, $4.50 seniors, and $4 children.

The Ocean Explorium at New Bedford Seaport is located at the corner of Purchase and Union streets in downtown New Bedford. For more information or directions visit online.

Lecture Series at Gulf of Maine Research Institute

Gulf of Maine Research Institute (GMRI) presents Sea State 4.1 lecture series:  Ocean Wind: Charting a Course for Maine’s Energy Future, Second Thursday of each month,  7PM, Gulf of Maine Research Institute,  350 Commercial Street, Portland, ME 04101
Sea State lectures are free and parking is provided in GMRI’s adjacent parking lot.

July 9 – The Gulf of Maine is the Saudi Arabia of Wind
Governor Angus King, Independence Wind

Aug 13 – How Does a State Take the Lead in Ocean Wind?  Lessons from Rhode Island and New Jersey
Chris Wisseman, Deepwater Wind

Sept 10 – The Challenges and Opportunities for Maine to Emerge as an International Ocean Energy Leader
George Harte, Ocean Energy Institute

Oct 8 – Grid Scale Renewable Energy: Lessons from Europe
Speaker to be Announced

Nov 12 – Community Wind on Maine’s Islands: Lessons from an Early Win on Vinalhaven and North Haven
George Baker, Harvard Business School and Fox Islands Electric Cooperative

Shoals Marine Lab Maine Family Program – Space Available

There are a few spaces left in KIDS AHOY, the Shoals Marine Lab’s marine biology program
for families with children ages 5-teens, on Appledore Island, Maine

date: MONDAY, AUGUST 24 – WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 26, 2009 (2 nights)
cost: $500/person (double occupancy)

WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 26 , 2009 (3 nights total)
total cost: $225/person (double occupancy)

Through field trips, creative crafts and interactive workshops your family will learn about life under the sea and along the shore.

Three days of discovery include:

* Boat trips in search of seals and seabirds,
* treasure hunts,
* stargazing,
* compass capers, and
* tidepooling

Learn about marine science in a relaxed and beautiful setting with your family.

To register, download the registration form and send with payment to:

Adult and Family Ed Registrations
Shoals Marine Laboratory
G-14 Stimson Hall, Cornell
Ithaca, NY 14853

You may also FAX your form(s) and pay via credit card: (607) 255-0742

QUESTIONS? call (607) 255-3717

E.O.Wilson and James Watson in Conversation

Looking Back, Looking Forward: A Conversation with James D. Watson and Edward O. Wilson
Moderated by Robert Krulwich
Wednesday, September 9, 5:30 PM

James D. Watson, a Nobel Prize winner for his role in the discovery of the of the structure of DNA, and Edward O. Wilson, a pioneer in the study of biodiversity and two-time Pulitzer Prize winner, will reflect on their storied careers, including their time together at Harvard, and look ahead to the key challenges for biological sciences in the 21st century. Moderated by Robert Krulwich, award-winning journalist and correspondent for National Public Radio. This event will be held at Sanders Theatre at Memorial Hall, 45 Quincy Street.

Tickets available beginning July 28 through the Harvard Box Office in Holyoke Center (Harvard Square) or by calling 617.496.2222.  Details online