Fieldwork

Spring - where art thou?

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    Guest blog post by Rhonda Tate
    April is the month when my mind turns to green grass, rushing streams, and Vital Signs! While it may seem like Vital Signs investigations are a far off dream, my students and I will be headed out into the field to gather some of our ongoing data just next week.

Field Trips

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As warmer temperatures arrive classrooms start to plan their spring field work. You may be asking interesting scientific questions about field sites right on campus. Some of you may be thinking about exciting field sites across town. Maybe you are thinking of partnering with local land trusts?

Maine’s wild soft-shell clams are under threat, but Dr. Beal is fighting back.

photo by VS user mymilkshake1

Last spring we got to help study predation of soft-shell clams with Dr. Brian Beal from the Downeast Institute. There are many predators of soft-shell clams but green crabs are the major threat. Soft-shell clams are one of Maine’s most valuable fisheries, second to lobsters and elvers. Today, just finding clams has become a challenge.

Fall Field Season 2014 recap

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As snow and storms move in and the days grow shorter, it’s time for team VS to look back on the fall field season! As always, fall is the busiest time of year for fieldwork and the numbers certainly support that this year.

Studying how green crabs predate soft-shell clams… and can we stop them?

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Dr. Brian Beal of the Downeast Institute and U. Maine Machias has studied green crabs for a long time. He’s also interested in how to prevent them from gobbling up a critter that Mainers and green crabs both love: soft-shell clams.

Teen's Groundbreaking Lionfish Research - or Was It?

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Brilliant scientific research can be done by anyone, anywhere and 13 year old Lauren Arrington’s science fair project has proved that beyond a doubt. Lionfish (Pterois spp.) are invasive species of poisonous fish that are impacting reefs from North Carolina to Florida. When Lauren entered a local science fair, she knew she wanted to study the invasive fish, so she chose to ask a question that no one had thought of before: how much salinity do lionfish need to survive?

The 2014 GMRI Citizen Science Challenge is here!

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The GMRI education team has launched a new citizen science challenge running from May 1st through September 1st. Our goal is for kids to participate outside of school or class assignments and be active members of the Vital Signs community on their own.

Winter is a fun Vital Signs season, too!

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    Winter is definitely here, but Vital Signs activities continue. There are many ways to participate in Vital Signs this winter. It's a great time to dig deeper and learn more about invasive species across the state and at our borders and to share that learning with others. Check out some ways to participate this winter.

Fall 2013 - Season Recap

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    Fall field seasons are the busiest time of year for Vital Signs. It's no surprise given the unpredictable winter and spring weather here in Maine. This fall was no exception, and it was busier in some ways than any past. Here's more info on Vital Signs this fall and falls past.

BOLO for Chinese Mitten Crabs

Green crabs have been getting a lot of press lately, but there's another crab invader on the East Coast to Be On the Look Out (BOLO) for. The Smithsonian Environmental Research Center wants your observations of Chinese mitten crabs.

Want to help monitor for the Chinese mitten crab? Here's what you can do:

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