News from UMCES

Migratory patterns of Eastern golden eagle population revealed

Eastern North America is home to a small population of Golden Eagles, but despite their vulnerability to habitat loss and other threats, little information has been available on the patterns of their annual migration. Unitl now. Researchers have been able to trace the eagles’ movements through isotopes in their feathers to identify their breeding and wintering areas.

Explore the Chesapeake Bay with science at the Horn Point Laboratory Open House, October 10

The University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science’s Horn Point Laboratory invites the public to a free Open House on Saturday, October 10, 2015, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Located along the banks of the Choptank River on Maryland's Eastern Shore, the laboratory is renowned for its study of marine ecosystems.

Study looks at best way to bring healthy streams back after development

Is it possible to restore a stream disturbed by housing developments and road construction? Can it return to its natural state, complete with buzzing insects and fish and worms that wiggle through its muddy bottom? Ecologist Robert Hilderbrand is about the find out. He and his research team at the University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science’s Appalachian Laboratory are examining the abilities of different stream restoration techniques to better improve the ecological side of stream restorations in urban watersheds.

UMCES 90: Celebrating 90 years

For 90 years, the University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science has led the way toward better management of Maryland’s natural resources and the protection and restoration of the Chesapeake Bay. From a network of laboratories spanning from the Allegheny Mountains to the Atlantic Ocean, our scientists provide sound advice to help state and national leaders manage the environment and prepare future scientists to meet the global challenges of the 21st century.

Algal biofuel start-up by UMCES alumnus makes waves

Ryan Powell holds up a vial of water with fingers caked with mud. It is algae extracted from pond choked with a bloom. He is standing on a farm outside of Baltimore, a test site for a new technology he has developed that can harvest algae from open ponds so it can be turned into crude oil. The oil can then be used as jet fuel, fuel oil, and diesel fuel.

Scientists expect slightly below average Chesapeake Bay ‘dead zone’ this summer

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Low river flow and nutrient loading reason for smaller predicted size

Scientists are expecting that this year’s Chesapeake Bay hypoxic low-oxygen zone, also called the “dead zone,” will be approximately 1.37 cubic miles – about the volume of 2.3 million Olympic-size swimming pools. While still large, this is 10 percent lower than the long-term average as measured since 1950. 

Alyson Santoro named Simons Early Career Investigator

Dr. Alyson Santoro, assistant professor at the University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science’s Horn Point Laboratory, is one of four scientists in the nation to be given the 2015 Simons Early Career Investigator in Marine Microbial Ecology and Evolution award by the Simons Foundation. The awards are intended to help launch and support the careers of outstanding young investigators who use quantitative approaches to advance our understanding of marine microbial ecology and evolution.

The secret lives of fish revealed by the digital age

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New book shows how the last four decades of technological advances have uncovered hidden migration behaviors of fish

"Imagine the clandestine lives of marine fishes,” begins “Migration Ecology of Marine Fishes,” a new book by Dr. David Secor, one of the most respected voices in marine fish migration studies. Their movements, social interactions, and favorite spots are all obscured beneath the surface. However, an explosion of technological advances in data gathering and analysis has allowed fisheries scientists to observe the secret lives of fish in a whole new way.

Study shows harmful algal blooms in Chesapeake Bay are more frequent

A recent study of harmful algal blooms in the Chesapeake Bay and its tributaries by the University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science show a marked increase in these ecosystem-disrupting events in the past 20 years that are being fed by excess nitrogen runoff from the watershed.  While algal blooms have long been of concern, this study is the first to document their increased frequency in the Bay and is a warning that more work is needed to reduce nutrient pollution entering the Bay's waters.

UMCES scientists win Best Paper of the Year award from American Fisheries Society

UMCES' Chesapeake Biological Laboratory (CBL) alumnus Adam Peer (shown in photo) and CBL Director Dr. Tom Miller were recipients of the Best Paper of the Year 2014 awarded by the American Fisheries Society for its journal North American Journal of Fisheries Management.

Dr. Mario Tamburri honored with President’s Award for Science Application

Dr. Mario Tamburri, Research Professor at the Chesapeake Biological Laboratory and an expert in coastal observing systems, has been honored by the University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science with the President's Award for Excellence in Application of Science. Tamburri was recognized for his leadership in applying innovative and well-tested environmental sensor technologies and in steadfastly working to reduce the risk of invasive species through maritime transportation.

Appalachian Laboratory Open House brings hands-on science to the community

Did you know there could be something other than water in the rain? Have you ever seen a tree breathe? Did you know that not all scientists wear lab coats? The Appalachian Laboratory hosted an Open House on May 2 that introduced the community to UMCES scientists and offered a chance to do hands-on science experiments to learn about the environment in western Maryland.

Commencement 2015: UMCES graduates the next generation of scientific leaders

The University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science’s second annual Commencement ceremony was held on Friday, May 1, at the Maryland Inn in Annapolis and featured Dr. Holly A. Bamford ’02, Acting Assistant Secretary for Conservation and Management for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, as keynote speaker. She told graduates to "take the leap" toward challenges that will come.

Citizens Restoring American Chestnuts to give seedlings to citizen scientists at Appalachian Laboratory Open House

For a third year in a row, Citizens Restoring American Chestnuts (CRAC) will be giving away American chestnuts to individuals who are interested in contributing to science while at the same time learning something about the environment. The give-away will be held at the Appalachian Laboratory Open House (301 Braddock Road in Frostburg) on May 2 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. The Open House will also have many other hands-on activities to explore science research at the Appalachian Laboratory.

Streams, bats, bugs & more at Appalachian Laboratory Open House May 2

Did you know there could be something other than water in the rain? Have you ever seen a tree breathe? Did you know that not all scientists wear lab coats? Visit the University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science's Appalachian Laboratory for a free Open House on Saturday, May 2, from 10 a.m.- 2 p.m. to find out. Learn about Maryland’s flying mammals, what lurks in pond scum, and more. 

Appalachian Laboratory honors environmental champion and Evergreen Founder Janice Keene

In honor of outstanding contributions to environmental management in Western Maryland, the University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science's Appalachian Laboratory has selected Janice Keene, president of the Evergreen Heritage Center Foundation, as recipient of its 2015 Richard A. Johnson Environmental Education Award. Since 2008, Ms. Keene has led the Evergreen Heritage Center in Frostburg, a public charity dedicated to providing experiential learning opportunities for children and adults while teaching them to be good stewards of the environment.

Professor Tom Miller receives highest university award for public service

When Professor Tom Miller first arrived at the University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science’s historic Chesapeake Biological Laboratory 20 years ago, he knew little about blue crabs. Today, he knows more than most people in Maryland and has been at the forefront in advances in blue crab management in the Chesapeake Bay. This Friday, the University System of Maryland (USM) Board of Regents honored Dr. Miller the 2015 USM Regents’ Faculty Award for Public Service, the highest honor that the Board bestows to recognize exemplary faculty achievement.

More food, low pollution effort gains traction

Nitrogen fertilizers make it possible to feed more people in the world than ever before. However, too much of it can also harm the environment. Professor Eric Davidson, director of the UMCES Appalachian Laboratory, has been leading a group of scientists, economists, social scientists, and agriculture experts in figuring out how to produce more food while lowering pollution at the same time. He calls it a “Mo Fo Lo Po”: more food, low pollution.

New tech transfer projects could lead to smarter fish feed, turn algae to biofuel

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Maryland Industrial Partnerships program brings science and business together

The Maryland Industrial Partnerships (MIPS) program has approved more than a dozen collaborative technology product development projects, teaming Maryland companies with university researchers to foster tech transfer and new technologies. Three of those projects are underway at the University of Maryland Center for Envrionental Science (UMCES):

Dr. Jacqueline Grebmeier awarded IASC Medal

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Recognized for 30-year career working to understand how Arctic marine ecosystems respond to environmental change

Dr. Jacqueline Grebmeier, research professor and a biological oceanographer at the University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science (UMCES), has been recognized for exceptional and sustained contributions to the understanding of the Arctic by the International Arctic Science Committee (IASC), an international scientific organization that supports leading-edge research through coordination by 22 member countries with Arctic research programs.