Research

seaweed coast news feature

Sequencing reveals how Porphyra thrives in a tough environment

Sequencing of the nuclear genome of Porphyra umbilicalis — laver or Atlantic nori — has revealed insights into how the bangiophyte red algae have thrived for over a billion years in the harshest environmental conditions — the pounding waves, baking sun and drying winds of the intertidal zone. An international research team of 50 scientists […]

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bee mapper

UMaine researchers to unveil wild bee habitat assessment tool July 19

University of Maine researchers have developed a tool called “BeeMapper” that will allow blueberry growers to assess the predicted wild bee abundance in the landscape surrounding their crop fields. They will debut and demonstrate the computer-based tool on Wednesday, July 19 at the UMaine Cooperative Extension annual Wild Blueberry Summer Field Day at Maine Agricultural […]

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old tree forest

The big ecological roles of small natural features

Ecologists and conservationists have long recognized that keystone species have major ecological importance disproportionate to their abundance or size. Think beavers, sea stars and prairie dogs — species that keep a ecosystem balanced. Similarly across landscapes, the keystone concept of disproportionate importance extends to other ecological elements, such as salt marshes in estuaries. Now an […]

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red-backed vole rodent wildlife

Long-term study links tree seeds, rodent population fluctuations

Using data from a 33-year population study, University of Maine researchers have found evidence that various tree species can affect rodent populations in different ways. The results advance the understanding of interactions between seeds and rodents, as well as complex population fluctuations, according to the researchers. The study was led by then-master of wildlife conservation […]

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Wet winter, spring alleviate drought conditions in state

Maine’s wet 2017 winter and spring eased the 2016 drought conditions, says Sean Birkel, University of Maine research assistant professor and Maine State Climatologist. Winter precipitation was 2.3 inches more than normal on a statewide average, he says, totaling 11.7 inches water equivalent. And spring precipitation was 2.5 inches above normal, totaling 12.3 inches water […]

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potato beetle

To protect crops, farmers could promote potato beetle cannibalism

Colorado potato beetles can decimate spud crops by devouring the plants’ foliage. That’s a big problem for farmers in Maine where the 2016 potato harvest was valued at more than $142 million. There’s more unsettling news — each female Colorado potato beetle can lay about 600 eggs in a growing season. And the species — […]

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ORPC successfully concludes Power Take-off testing at UMaine

Ocean Renewable Power Company (ORPC) has successfully completed full-scale testing of a specialized, water-lubricated bearing system and associated driveline components designed for underwater systems that capture energy from ocean tides and river currents at the University of Maine Advanced Structures and Composites Center. The purpose is to make the systems more durable and efficient, reduce […]

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2017-6-14 Ethiopian-Highlands-news-feature

Lyon: Rising temps provide for conditions conducive for malaria transmission in Ethiopia

Increasing temperatures are fostering more favorable conditions for the transmission of malaria into the highlands of Ethiopia, according to a study led by University of Maine associate research professor Bradfield Lyon. Traditionally, the cooler climate in the highlands has provided a natural buffer against malaria transmission. But new data indicate rising temperatures over the past […]

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