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Site Profile

Michele Dionne
Cayce Dalton
Hannah Wilhelm

The Site Profile of the Wells National Estuarine Research Reserve characterizes the environmental features, habitat types, and biological communities within the Wells Reserve. The profile was completed in 2006 under the direction of Dr. Michele Dionne, research director at the Wells Reserve; edited by Dr. Dionne, Christopher Cayce Dalton, and Hannah Wilhelm; and designed by Christopher Cayce Dalton with cover art by James Dochtermann. It was released in January 2007.

Individual chapters of the profile are becoming available for download below. The full document is also available as a PDF via NOAA or can be viewed at the Dorothy Fish Coastal Resource Library at the Wells Reserve.



The Wells National Estuarine Research Reserve is many things to many people. It is a breathtaking haven for those who seek the beauty and serenity of natural coastal landscapes. It is a place to wander among the many buildings of an historic farm, stepping back through generations. It is a place where we can thank the visionary citizens of York County (and beyond), and the Reserve’s non-profit partner, the Laudholm Trust. Together they continue to work hard and long to protect and transform this piece of earth — from fallow farm to field classroom and laboratory. It is a place where volunteers, visitors, students, educators, artists, natural resource managers, planners, policymakers, and scientists come to decipher challenging coastal dilemmas and unknowns. Their contributions merge with the work of the Wells NERR staff to bring human and natural communities closer together, benefiting all. Through the determined and impassioned work of all those connected with Maine’s only National Estuarine Research Reserve, our coast’s increasingly vulnerable natural communities will better survive. Indeed, we dare to hope that ultimately, they will thrive.

— Michele Dionne, January 2007


Environmental Setting

  • Geomorphology (5 MB) by Britt Argow
  • Climate and Weather
  • Hydrogeography
  • Land Use
  • Water Quality

Biological Setting

Ecological Setting

Research and Monitoring

  • Research Program
  • Monitoring Programs




Dionne M, Dalton C, Wilhelm H, editors. Site profile of the Wells National Estuarine Research Reserve. Wells (ME): Wells National Estuarine Research Reserve. 312 p.


  • National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (grants NA05NOS4201119 and NA06NOS4200116)
  • Laudholm Trust

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