MEES News, November 2013

Student News:

Following a nomination by Chapter AH, Easton, Maryland, Dana Bunnell-Young (doctoral candidate with Dr. Thomas Fisher) was awarded a P.E.O International Scholar Award for 2014. On a competitive basis, the organization awards $15,000 scholarships to women pursuing a doctoral degree.  Dana is also a “National Geographic Young Explorer,” having been awarded one of their coveted grants this year and is the recipient of a competitive National Science Foundation Doctoral Dissertation Improvement Grant.

Brittany Marsden (a MEES doctoral candidate working with Dr. Maile Neel) was awarded the Maryland Environmental Education Scholarship for Academic Study by the NAAEE (North American Association for Environmental Education).

Matthew Parker (a MEES doctoral student working with Drs. Reginal Harrell and Douglas Lipton) is a co-PI on a grant recently funded by the National Sea Grant Office entitled “Sea Grant Aquaculture Extension 2013 Evaluation of Innovative Practices for Sustainable Aquaculture Development in Chesapeake Bay.”  Matt will be working on estimating the value of ecosystem services of oyster farms in the bay modeling nutrient cycling on aquaculture farms with Dr. Suzanne Bricker, Manager of NOAA's National Estuarine Eutrophication Assessment, National Centers for Coastal Ocean Science.

Michael Pennino, a MEES doctoral candidate working with Drs. Sujay Kaushal and Andrew Miller, was awarded the Joan Ehrenfeld Award for Best Student Presentation in Urban Ecology at the 2013 Ecological Society of America meeting.

Ryan Powell, MEES doctoral candidate working with Dr. Russell Hill, received the best poster award at the 2013 MEES Colloquium for his poster entitled, “Rapid Harvest of Microalgae Using a Novel Bacterial Isolate.”

MEES doctoral student Rhea Thompson (advisor Dr. David Tilley) has been awarded the National Science Foundation Louis Stokes Alliances for Minority Participation Bridge to the Doctorate Fellowship at the University of Maryland. The Fellowship is a highly competitive program designed to encourage and support UMCP graduate students pursuing degrees in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics.

MEES GSO Photo Contest results:

1st place: Emily Tewes (UMES), "Prothonotary Warbler"

2nd place: Emily Tewes (UMES), "Gold Dust Day Gecko"

3rd place: Kristen Lycett (UMES), "Pony Swim"


Alvarez J V and J S Chung. 2013. Cloning of prophenoloxidase from hemocytes of the blue crab, Callinectes sapidus and its expression and enzyme activity during the molt cycle. Fish & Shellfish Immunology 35(5): 1349-1358

Boynton, W.R., C.L.S. Hodgkins, C.A. O'Leary, E.M. Bailey, A.R. Bayard and L.A. Wainger. 2013. Multi-decade Responses of a Tidal Creek System to Nutrient Load Reductions: Mattawoman Creek, Maryland USA. Estuaries and Coasts.

Colton, A. R., M. J. Wilberg, V. Coles, and T. J. Miller. In press.  An evaluation of the synchronization in the dynamics of blue crab populations in the western Atlantic.  Fisheries Oceanography.

Kazyak DC, Letcher BH, Zydlewski J, O’Donnell MJ. 2013. Growth variability of brook charr (Salvelinus fontinalis) in coastal Maine. Ecology of Freshwater Fish.

Marsden, B.W., Engelhardt, K.A.M., Neel, M.C. (2013) Genetic rescue versus outbreeding depression in Vallisneria americana: Implications for mixing seed sources for restoration. Biol. Conserv. 167: 203-214. doi:

Rattner B.A., Lazarus R.S., Heinz G.H., Karouna-Renier N.K., Schultz S.L., Hale R.C. (2013). Comparative embryotoxicity of a pentabrominated diphenyl ether mixture to common terns (Sterna hirundo) and American kestrels (Falco sparverius). Chemosphere. 93 (2): 441-447. DOI: 10.1016/j.chemosphere.2013.05.030

Robinson, J. M., M. J. Wilberg, J. Adams, and M. L. Jones. In press. A spatially specific age-structured model for describing sea lamprey (Petromyzon marinus) population dynamics. Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Science.

Suarez-Rubio, M., Wilson, S., Leimgruber, P., & Lookingbill, T. (2013). Threshold Responses of Forest Birds to Landscape Changes around Exurban Development. PLoS One, 8(6), 11 pp.

Techa, S. and Chung, J. S. (2013). Ecdysone and retinoid-X receptors of the blue crab, Callinectes sapidus: Cloning and their expression patterns in eyestalks and Y-organs during the molt cycle. Gene, 527(1), 139–153.

Wainger, L.A. and J.S. Shortle.  Local Innovations in Water Protection: Experiments with Economic Incentives.  The magazine of food, farm, and resource issues.  Choices 28(3), 6 pp.

Watson, A. M., Barrows, F. T., and Place, A. R. (2013). Taurine Supplementation of Plant Derived Protein and n-3 Fatty Acids are Critical for Optimal Growth and Development of Cobia, Rachycentron canadum. Lipids, 48(9), 899–913.

Wilberg, M. J., J. M. Robinson, S. A. M. Rains, J. L. Humphrey, and R. N. Lipcius. In press. Effects of location errors on estimates of dredge catchability from depletion based methods. Fisheries Research.

Alumni News:

Dail Laughinghouse, MEES Ph.D. in 2012 under Dr. Patrick Kangas, has been doing postdoctoral research in Antarctica and the Arctic with the Universite de Liege.  In November, he will start a new position on an NSF Microbial Tree of Life grant.

Courtney McGeachy, a 2012 MEES M.S. graduate under Dr. Bradley Stevens, has been promoted to Coordinator, Marine and Coastal Conservation at the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation.

Aaron Watson, MEES 2013 Ph.D. under Dr. Allen Place, will be starting a position in November as Assistant Marine Scientist at the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources’ Marine Resources Research Institute in Charleston, SC.

Faculty News:

Dr. Madhumi Mitra, along with co-authors Abhijit Nagchaudhuri and Corrinne Johnson Rutzke, was awarded the Best Paper published within the Energy Conversion and Conservation Division (ECCD) of the American Society for Engineering Education (ASEE) for the paper entitled, “Energizing the STEAM Curricula with Bioenergy and Bioproducts.”