Shoals Marine Laboratory's Monthly Newsletter - The Island View
August 2017
Dear Friends of Shoals Marine Laboratory,

The energy buzz among the students was palpable as they sat in their assigned chairs on August 8th waiting for the start of the First Annual Shoals Marine Laboratory Research Symposium.

Under the tutelage of principle investors, each of our hardworking Research Interns dedicated themselves all summer to carve out their own independent scientific research on topics ranging from parasites to hermit crabs. Matthew from Cornell University told the crowd in Kiggins Commons about his work to develop a citizen science project for high school students that will introduce SML research to mainland school curriculums. Amisha from the University of New England presented her work on the fascinating topic of what causes divorce among pairs of Appleodore’s breeding gulls. Leah from Dartmouth College reported on her study of how hermit crabs find new shells as they grow larger. Kadianne from UNH discussed her research that explored how gray and harbor seals share (or not) habitat on Duck Island.

In the afternoon, the SML Research Apprentices (a new program this year for students who would like to pursue shorter independent projects within a course structure) presented their preliminary research findings. From snake habitat selection on Appledore to mummichog jumping, they all did a great job sharing their projects to an audience of their peers, mentors, SML staff, and faculty.

My co-masters of ceremonies for the day-long event were Andrew Swafford, Ph.D. candidate at UC Santa Barbara, and Dr. Brian Cheng, faculty at UMass Amherst. Andrew has been expertly guiding the research apprenticeship program over the last month, and Brian was one of SML’s first two Scientist-in-Residence Fellows ("SIRF"). This new fellowship program is aimed at expanding research offerings at SML and increasing the diversity of the mentoring team available to SML's student researchers. I think the enhancements made this summer to our undergraduate research programs were very evident on August 8th; the student presentations were professional, well-described, and clearly practiced. Our 2017 student researchers showed us all that they have truly transformed into scientists this summer and we could not be more proud of them and their accomplishments! I am excited to see this event become a new SML tradition. What a great start!

With deep appreciation and warm wishes,
Jennifer Seavey, Ph.D.
Kingsbury Director of the Shoals Marine Laboratory
Group photo of the 2017 SML Research Interns with mentors Dr. Jim Coyer, Dr. Brian Cheng (SIRF), and Dr. Kylla Benes (SIRF).
Group photo of the 2017 SML Research Apprentices with their mentor, Andrew Swafford.
SML Alumni & Friends Weekend
September 8-10th. There is still time to register and join us!

Building off the wonderful momentum of SML’s 50th Anniversary Celebration last summer, we are poised to kick-off our 1st Annual SML Alumni & Friends Weekend on Appledore Island, September 8-10, 2017.

This weekend is for Shoalers across all five decades of SML courses and programs, including alumni, faculty, staff, researchers, community supporters, and friends! Enjoy a low-key weekend to relax and connect with others who love SML as much as you do. Families welcome!

Photos of the SML 50th Anniversary Celebration, by David Murray of Clear Eye Photo.
2017 Tern Conservation Program Update
The Tern Conservation Program on White and Seavey Islands recently received some great media attention, including nation-wide NPR coverage, thanks to the increased level of active research that SML has added to the program's monitoring initiatives.

Seabirds have the capacity to serve as valuable sentinels for the health of the Gulf of Maine's waters and fisheries, and the Tern Conservation Program is helping to shed light on the importance of seabirds as regional indicators.

Directed by Dr. Jennifer Seavey and managed in the field by Dr. Liz Craig and seabird technicians, Elizabeth Ford and Taylor Ouellette, the team has been up and running on on White and Seavey Islands since mid-May and closes for the 2017 season later this week.

Click on these links to view the NPR story and WGBH video.

The Tern Conservation Program is a partnership between SML and NH Fish & Game.
We are excited to report that ~3200 pairs of Common Terns, ~90 pairs of Roseate Terns, and 2 pairs of Arctic Terns were counted as part of the annual Tern Conservation Program census.
The Artist's Garden
On August 17th in Portsmouth, NH, Shoals Marine Laboratory and the Music Hall Loft co-hosted a film screening and panel discussion for a documentary that highlights the importance of Appledore Island as one of four key art colonies for American Impressionism in New England.

The film titled "The Artist’s Garden: American Impressionism" was in part filmed in Celia Thaxter's garden on Appledore Island, with special attention to its influence on impressionist painter Childe Hassam.

We would like to thank our discussion panelists and panel moderator!

  • Dr. Jennifer Seavey, panelist
  • Doug Nelson, panelist and SML Community Engagement Committee
  • Alastair Dacey, panelist and SML Artist-in-Residence
  • John Forti, panelist, heirloom gardener and leader for SML's Take a Bite out of Appledore
  • Maryellen Burke, panel moderator
SML Adult & Family Programs are underway...
Shoals Marine Laboratory's  Adult & Family Programs are underway and we are having a blast! Each program is all-inclusive , and their unique themes reflect SML's mission to educate our community about the marine environment and sustainability. If you were not able to join us this year, we hope you're thinking about which program you'd like to sign up for next summer!
Shoals History and Archaeology
Led by Dr. Nate Hamilton and Dr. Robin Hadlock Seeley, our first class of Shoals History and Archaeology participants spent time at the Smuttynose Island dig site, combing the soil layers for artifacts from the Isles of Shoals' past. The group also toured around Appledore to examine the remains of foundations from the hotel era.


Photo thanks to Rick Cliche.
SeaSHOALS: Marine Science Education for Families
Thanks to Coastal Carol (Carol Steingart) and Salty Sara (Dr. Sara Ellis), eight families spent a long weekend on Appledore Island tidepooling, watching bird banding demonstrations, dissecting dogfish, spotting seals, and more! Kids, parents, and grandparents alike enjoyed the best of everything Shoals has to offer. What fun!

Shoals Ecology: Seabirds, Seals, and Seaweed
This incredibly enthusiastic group of adults dove head first into marine lab life and island exploration, from seabird observations to marine mammal sightings, intertidal collections, and laboratory work they did it all with smiles and laughter along the way!

Seascapes & Landscapes, artists' retreat
In progress right now! Local artists Wendy Turner and Hannah Phelps are finishing out this week with their group of artists printmaking, painting, sketching, and taking tons of photographs around the island. Inspired by the seascapes and landscapes of Appledore, its plants, animals, and even vegetables from the Wednesday afternoon Food Run, the work being produced is magnificent and their artistic processes are fascinating to watch!


Photo thanks to Hannah Phelps.
Next up for Labor Day Weekend...
(SOLD OUT!) Take a Bite Out of Appledore: an Eco-culinary Island Retreat with the culinary team of Chef Evan Mallett, Chef Sam Hayward, and SML Head Chef Cam Heins, along with the ecology team of SML's Dr. Jennifer Seavey Dr. Gregg Moore, heirloom gardener John Forti, and GMRI's Julek Chawarski. It's going to be delicious and informative!

Shoals Marine Laboratory is a joint partnership between
Cornell University and the University of New Hampshire.