Researchers to Investigate Sandwich Marina for New Invasive Species

SANDWICH – Scientific experts will visit local marine areas on August 11, Sandwich Marina and the Massachusetts Maritime Dock in Buzzards Bay to observe, identify, and record marine organisms as part of a rapid assessment of newly introduced and potentially invasive species.

Species introduced to an area through human activity have the capacity to become invasive when their spread harms the environment, economy, or public health.

The study is coordinated by the Massachusetts Office of Coastal Zone Management within the Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs.

“This impressive long-term effort documents the animal and plant species along our coast and identifies new species finding their way to these waters,” said Energy & Environmental Affairs Secretary Rebecca Tepper.

“This information not only helps us manage impacts of marine invasive species but also gives insight into the potential effects of climate change on species distribution,” Tepper said.

Scientists, including a team of divers, spend an hour at each site examining as many surfaces under the water as possible, searching for native and invasive marine species.

Samples are collected and brought back to a laboratory for accurate identification.

The process of identifying a new species introduction is lengthy, often taking months of careful examination and consultation with other scientists for a definitive answer.

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