The Class of 2013
In 2013, we began an 11-week training course for two cooperatives of fishermen in Harpswell and Corea, Maine. We created a comprehensive curriculum for delivery to 12 fishermen, including tours of existing aquaculture operations. University of Maine researcher Teresa Johnson and graduate student Karen Pianka are studying the process, and measuring the changes in perception and knowledge that can accompany training.
Photo: Dr. Chris Davis of the Pemaquid Oyster Company and Maine Aquaculture Innovation Center, demonstrating low-cost methods to measure salinity to the 2013 Harpswell group, on the wharf at Interstate Co-Op.
Classroom work was paired with applied, hands-on activity, to round out the learning experience. Field trips were made to mussel farms, oyster farms and a large recirculation aquaculture facility.
Photo: Fishermen from the Corea group, on a field trip to meet with mussel and oyster farmer Evan Young (left), on his mussel farm in Blue Hill Bay.
One participating fisherman has initiated a new marine aquaculture business producing oysters and mussels, with others in preparatory stages. Meanwhile, commercial shellfish harvesters and lobstermen in the towns of Brunswick and Harpswell requested that the course be offered again to their communities. Twenty fishermen are registered for the 2015 course.
Photo: Corea fishermen Justin Dunbar and Chris Urqhart (in baseball caps), with graduate student Karen Pianka and Sarah Redmond (Maine Sea Grant and UM Cooperative Extension), during a class in Corea about how to grow different kinds of seaweed.