The Wrack

The Wrack is the Wells Reserve blog, our collective logbook on the web.

Posts tagged research

  • The Great Thing About Science Is...

    | January 15, 2015

    It is NOT about easy answers, shortcuts, or even [usually] a-ha revelations. Why on earth is that great?

    Stupid scientists, never sure of anything

  • Green Crab Project Update

    Wells Reserve Contributor | January 14, 2015

    Back in September we reported on a current research project going on at the reserve — green crab sampling! We now have an update on this project, but first to refresh your memory…

    Over the 2014 field season, research staff and interns participated in a green crab abundance study in hopes of getting a better understanding of population dynamics of this invasive species on marshes along the coast of Maine. We used modified eels traps baited with Atlantic herring, deployed two traps at a time per site, left them for 24 hours, and repeated this process eight times between June and October.

  • Wells Reserve Hosts Workshop on "Blue Carbon" Science

    | December 8, 2014 | Filed under: News

    Group photo of 'blue carbon

    WELLS, Maine, December 8, 2014 — Scientists from around New England met at the Wells National Estuarine Research Reserve on December 5 for a workshop focused on “blue carbon” science and policy. For the first time, scientists from throughout the region gathered to share research results, identify gaps in knowledge, and plan future collaborations involving carbon in coastal habitats.

    The term “blue carbon” refers to the ability of salt marshes, seagrass meadows, and mangrove forests to take up and store carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases from the atmosphere. Coastal wetlands capture carbon and store it at rates even greater than rainforests.

    “Carbon held naturally in coastal wetlands is not entering the atmosphere as a greenhouse gas, so these habitats have real potential to mitigate climate change,” said Dr. Kristin Wilson, Wells Reserve research director, who co-coordinated the workshop.

  • New England Estuarine Research Society Fall 2014 Meeting

    Wells Reserve Contributor | October 21, 2014

    On October 16, Research Director Kristin Wilson, Research Assistant Amelie Jensen and University of New Hampshire TIDES Student Sydney Nick traveled to the University of Connecticut’s Avery Point Campus to attend the New England Estuarine Research Society Fall Meeting. This semi-annual meeting consisted of oral presentations, poster presentations, and plenty of opportunities to mingle and socialize with the other attendees ranging from scientists to professors, students, and NOAA officials.

    Sydney Nick, Chris Feurt, Kristin Wilson, Amelie Jensen pose at NEERS

    Sydney Nick, Dr. Christine Feurt, Dr. Kristin Wilson, and me at the NEERS meeting.

  • How to Catch 5,000 Green Crabs

    Wells Reserve Contributor | September 11, 2014

    Measuring a green crabThe invasive European green crab is not only a popular topic in the media these days; here at the reserve green crabs are receiving their fair share of attention as well — 5,878 of them so far to be exact!

    The Wells Reserve has teamed up with the University of Maine, Casco Bay Estuary Partnership, and Southern Maine Health Care to study the impacts of the invasive European green crab (Carcinus maenas) on the geology and “stability” of our marshes. Over the summer we have been collecting abundance data that will later be used in conjunction with fyke net data, water quality data, and even geological techniques to better understand the effects green crabs are having on salt marshes throughout southern Maine.

  • 2014 Blue Carbon Workshop

    Wells Reserve Contributor | September 1, 2014

    Goal

    Create a U.S./Canada working group, identify research gaps, and establish a regional approach to blue carbon science and policy.

    Project Period

    2014–2015

    Activities

    Blue Carbon workshop logoHold workshop "Blue is the New Green: Valuing Carbon Storage to Understand Barriers and Build Bridges to Enhance Salt Marsh and Seagrass Conservation and Management" (December 5, 2014)

  • Impacts of green crab predation on soft-shell clams

    | June 4, 2014 | Filed under: Observations

    The reserve works with Dr. Brian Beal, one of the leading scientists looking at the impacts of green crabs on soft-shell clam populations.

  • Panacea

    | May 17, 2014

    This boy was checked for ticks immediately following this photo. Eternal vigilance is the price of freedom... from ticks!

    The following was published in the Biddeford-Saco Journal Tribune Sunday edition, 5/18/2014.

    Hey, parents! Psst – come over here. I’ve got something for ya. Something I think you’re gonna like.

    What if I told you I had something that supercharged your kids’ test scores and GPA, made them more attentive and cooperative, improved “good” cholesterol and blood circulation, lowered obesity and stress? How much would that be worth to you? What would you pay for this wonder drug? $100? $1,000?

    Well, it’s not for sale. Actually, it’s free, it’s legal, and you’ve already got plenty at home.

  • The Sounds of Place

    | May 6, 2014 | Filed under: Observations
    Purdue University ecological acoustics research team on a cool, damp, May day
    Last week we set up acoustical equipment in 12 locations throughout the reserve, typically about 40 feet off the trails. The equipment will create an ecological soundscape of habitats… mapping sounds of animals and other living things (biophony), sounds coming from wind in the trees, rain, and the ocean (geophony), and sounds of jet planes, people talking, trains, gunshots, and lawnmowers (anthrophony). Together, these recordings will help describe our environment over time… who is there, who is missing, what is disturbed, what has changed.

    Will these soundscapes reveal habitats of vitality or quiet? What changes happen over time? Is the food web diminishing or increasing with new animals, returning animals? Are the sounds different from year to year, day to day, month to month, season to season?

  • This is the PITs

    | May 6, 2014

    asdfIn his recent post, Spreading the Fish Ladder News, Jake mentioned our imminent use of passive integrated transponders, or PIT tags, to track fish. But just what is a PIT tag and exactly how does it work?

    A passive integrated transponder is a miniature electronic circuit typically encased in glass and implanted under an animal's skin or in a body cavity (the fish tags we'll use are thin and just 12mm long). Each tag is programmed with a unique number to identify an individual animal. That number is read automatically when the animal travels close to a receiving station.