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Grants Awarded - February 26, 2010

 
 
Terrestrial Monitoring of Colonial-nesting Wading Birds and Water Birds in MD’s Coastal Bays
 
Applicant:  Delmarva Low-Impact Tourism Experiences (DLITE)
 
Amount Awarded:  $5,448

Project Summary:

Delmarva Low-Impact Tourism Experiences (DLITE) is requesting $30,205 to conduct censuses of colonial-nesting wading birds and waterbirds in the Maryland coastal bays for the Maryland Department of Natural Resources (DNR). Funding will be used to train “citizen-scientist” volunteers to conduct surveys of heronries and waterbird colonies on small islands in the coastal bays. Once trained, volunteers will be asked to assist the Maryland DNR in subsequent years with continued monitoring and data collection. Data collection protocols will follow previous efforts as recommended by Maryland DNR Central Regional Ecologist David Brinker. The project will also incorporate public outreach and education opportunities through tours with elected officials, tourism officials, students, and the use of mainstream and social media.     


Berlin Stormwater Management Pilot Project  

Applicant:  Grow Berlin Green      
 
Amount Awarded:   $7,000

Project Summary:

Funding is requested to support a Grow Berlin Green stormwater management project in the Town of Berlin in order to reduce downstream impacts on Newport Bay. The project will be a partnership with a local engineering firm and the Town to undertake a Stormwater Management Pilot Program study to evaluate and develop implementation recommendations for stormwater management approaches at priority sites that address both water quality and flooding issues.  


Ocean City Wetland Patrol

Applicant:  Town of Ocean City
 
Amount Awarded:  $1,152 

Project Summary:                           

We propose an adopt-a-wetland program. This program will be modeled after the Ocean City Dune Patrol that has been in existence for 20 years. This would be set up to create a volunteer corps of individuals who would be assigned areas of the wetlands, canal and outfalls throughout the Town who would be caretakers of these areas. Removing trash and debris and reporting major problems in need of the Town’s attention. The dune patrol is a volunteer program that is self-paced. People survey and clean the dunes at their convenience. The Wetland Patrol would be similar. However, two clean up days would be scheduled the same day at the City clean up day in April and the Coastal Cleanup day in September. We would coordinate trash pickup with the Town solid waste Department. The strategy for implementing this program would be to determine areas that need to be assigned, advertise for volunteers, keep a database of the volunteers, and purchase supplies to help the volunteers with a clean up activity. A PowerPoint would be developed and given to all volunteers as a self paced educational tool to help educate them on the problem the wetland face and what trash and debris can do to harm the ecosystem. Cost for developing the power point would be part of the grant request.

 
 
A Retrospective Analysis of Phytoplankton in Coastal Bays and Comparisons to Nutrient Composition and Trends
 
Applicant:  University of MD Center for Environmental Science (UMCES)   
 
Amount Awarded:  $24,400

Project Summary:

The Coastal Bays face multiple threats from population growth and development, associated habitat changes and increased nutrient loading and erosion as development and tourism progress.  Retrospective analyses of nutrient changes in the bays have shown that not only has there been a recent increasing trend, but that there was an abrupt increase around the year 2002, consistent with a shift from a long-term dry to a more sustained wet period.  However, there were differences in the season and year in which these were first noted for each nutrient form.  For example, increases in PO43- occurred first, in 2001, followed by those of NO3- and then NH4+ in 2003.  Increases in chlorophyll a were also noted beginning around 2003.  In these analyses a statistical approach called the cumulative sums of variability (CUSUM) proved to be exceptionally powerful in defining a “tipping point” of the Coastal Bays.  Herein, we propose to extend this approach to a retrospective analysis of dominant phytoplankton groups to begin to link the changes in nutrient loading, by form, with the change in phytoplankton community, and ultimately to other resources in the food web.  With increasing brown tide blooms and other harmful algal species now occurring in these bays, this analysis will permit a synthesis of how different nutrients relate to these changes in phytoplankton.  Such data will lead to prioritized actions for reducing nutrient loading, and more specifically will be able to identify which nutrients and form to target to begin to restore healthy phytoplankton communities. 

                                                               

Ghost Crab Pot Collection          

Applicant: Shah Amir & Jamie Steele

Amount Awarded:  $3,000 ($1,500 each)

Project Summary:                           

Derelict crab pots can be a navigational problem and can kill turtles and other animals that get caught in the traps.  I understand that the Coastal Bays are concerned about the pots.  Derelict pots have been seen washed up on marshes and in shoaling waters.  This proposal is to take 10 days between February and March to collect derelict pots and bring the pots to local metal recyclers.  Most of the effort would be in the northern bays but also may include the Chincoteague Bay. 


 


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