Researchers at the University of New Hampshire are turning to an unusual source – otoliths, the inner ear bones of fish — to identify the nursery habitats of winter flounder in hopes of restoring their populations along the U.S. Eastern Seaboard.
Led by UNH biogeochemical oceanographer Joe Salisbury, a group of 15 scientists is currently aboard the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration research vessel Gordon Gunter on a two-leg, 34-day expedition that will help determine how humans are causing changes in the oxygen and carbon dioxide content of oceans, leading to the global acidification of seawater.
When UNH oyster conservation efforts received an award recently, professor Ray Grizzle shared the honors with not only The Nature Conservancy (TNC), his partner in restoring oysters to Great Bay since 2006. Nearly 100 local citizen-scientists and eight million microscopic oyster larvae also had a piece in the Gulf of Maine Visionary Award from the Gulf of Maine Council.
Few people feel the sea’s power to giveth —and taketh away — more palpably than the beachfront homeowners of Plum Island, the spit of sand along the Atlantic Ocean in the Massachusetts towns of Newbury and Newburyport.
Photograph by Meghan Hill
Ian Gagnon’s UNH journey has taken him into a high-speed cavitation tunnel, a high-tech research company, an alternative energy startup and to Africa, where he disinfected and fortified wells in two Ugandan communities as a member of the UNH chapter of Engineers Without Borders.
Photo by Tracey Bentley