New marine mammal position open

Oregon Sea Grant and the Oregon State University Marine Mammal Institute are jointly seeking to fill a new, full-time assistant- or associate-level professorship in marine mammal behavioral ecology.

The new faculty member will be based at OSU’s Hatfield Marine Science Center in Newport, and will also serve as Sea Grant Extension marine mammal specialist. Duties include a combination of research, teaching and public outreach.

This is a fulltime, tenure-track position, with tenure offered at .50 FTE. A PhD. is required. Rank will depend on qualifications.

The selected candidate will be expected to conduct original research and provide statewide, national and international expertise on marine mammals with an emphasis on cetacean ecology. He or she will conduct programs on appropriate basic science, conservation, wildlife management and natural resources issues, and will be expected to raise funds for annual research objectives and to help build the OSU marine mammal endowment.

The full position description and application is available on the OSU Jobs site. For full consideration, applications must be submitted by Dec. 15, 2012.

Learn more:


Oregon Sea Grant Summer Scholars program

2011 Summer Scholar Sara Duncan samples water in the Yaquina estuaryApplications due April 17, 2012 for the Oregon Sea Grant Summer Scholar program for undergraduates. The program will place students in a natural resource management agency and is designed to help prepare undergraduate students for graduate school and careers in marine science, policy, management, and outreach.


To learn more about the Summer Scholars experience, visit our Sea Grant Scholars blog.

Port Orford launches national tour of Ocean Frontiers film

PORT ORFORD  – Ocean Frontiers, a new feature-length film about ocean management and conservation, will launch its national tour in Port Orford,  which stars in the film as an example of how science and fishing can work together to manage marine resources.

The debut screening starts at 5 pm Saturday, Feb. 11 at the Savoy Theatre in downtown Port Orford. followed by a reception in the nearby Community Building, with Oregon Governor John Kitzhaber,  First Lady Cylvia Hayes, representatives of state and local government and members of the Port Orford Ocean Resource Team (POORT) expected to attend. A second screening is scheduled for  4 p.m. Sunday.

Tickets are $10 and are available only online, at

The film will also be shown at the Performing Arts Center in Newport at 7 pm Feb. 22.

Port Orford is one of several US coastal communities featured in the 80-minute film, which tracks the evolution of marine resource management from a “maximum allowable catch” approach to a growing recognition that resources are finite, and need to be managed for the future as well as the present. The film explores the shift toward  ecosystem-based management and marine spatial planning tools that rely on science, and an informed and engaged public. Communities from the Pacific Northwest to Boston Harbor, the Florida Keys, the Gulf of Mexico and even the cornfields of Iowa are featured.

POORT figures prominently in the film as an example of how resource users,  scientists, conservationists and others can work together to help understand, protect and manage ocean areas for the benefit of the resource – and the people who depend on it. Ongoing collaboration between fishermen and scientists in the south coast community was a strong factor in the state’s decision to establish one of Oregon’s first marine reserves at Redfish Rocks, just off  Port Orford.

Oregon Sea Grant has supported the community-based effort since its early days, helping bring fishermen and scientists together and providing information and assistance as the group grew and evolved. Sea Grant helped the community design and conduct surveys and interviews that let the town  build its first  long-form community profile to give resource managers greater insight into how fisheries reach deep into the community’s social and economic life. The format and interview has since been applied to other Oregon coastal towns, and is proving to be a model for communities  elsewhere in the US.

Learn more:

Watch a 10-minute trailer for the film:

Sea Grant seeks new Education Program leader at HMSC

Oregon Sea Grant is seeking applicants for a full-time position to lead marine education and visitor programming at OSU’s Hatfield Marine Science center in Newport, on the central Oregon coast.

The position, an annual appointment with reappointment at the discretion of the Sea Grant director, provides leadership, development and management of Sea Grant’s marine education programs and visitor services. The program leader is responsible for the popular HMSC Visitor Center and its bookstore, K-12 education and teacher services, public programming, exhibitry and aquarium support. He or she reports to the Oregon Sea Grant Director and serves on the Sea Grant leadership team.

The new director will replace Nancee Hunter, who is leaving to pursue a doctoral degree.

A Master’s degree in education or a field closely required to the position duties is required; a PhD is preferred. For more information and application instructions, visit the OSU Jobs site. Application deadline: July 10, 2011.

Science Communications Fellowship

Announcing the availability of the Oregon Sea Grant Science Communication Fellowship.  The Fellow will focus on science writing at Oregon Sea Grant Communications, working in a professional office dedicated to communicating science to non-specialists.

For more information:

Sea Grant seeks marine program, research specialists

CORVALLIS, OR. – Oregon Sea Grant is looking for marine science professionals to fill two non-teaching faculty positions supporting its research initiatives and collaborations – and some part-time educators to help teach children and adults more about the sea.

The program, based at Oregon State University, is seeking to fill two 12-month, fixed term professional faculty positions on campus. One, a marine program specialist, will be charged with developing and executing university-wide, statewide and regional initiatives in which Sea Grant is involved. The other, a research program specialist, will help run  OSG’s biennial research funding competition and Sea Grant Scholars fellowship programs, as well as reporting on their impacts. Both positions require at least a master’s degree in the marine sciences. Application deadlines are Jan. 30 for the Marine Program Specialist and Feb. 2 for the Research Program specialist.

Meanwhile, the Sea Grant education program at OSU’s Hatfield Marine Science Center in Newport is accepting applications for its marine educators’ pool.  These part-time, academic-wage appointments involve presenting informal marine education programs to K-12 school audiences and other groups. Applications will be accepted throughout the 2010-2011 academic year.

Read more about the positions and how to apply.

Climate consortium seeks two for outreach effort

The Climate Decision Support Consortium, a Northwest partnership led by the Oregon Climate Change Research Institute at Oregon State University, is seeking applicants for two positions: one to act as a Program Manager and one a Regional Extension Climate Specialist. The consortium is the designated Pacific Northwest Regional Integrated Sciences and Assessments program under the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Climate Program Office.

The program manager will coordinate the project’s task teams, internal and external communications, and meetings fostering team integration, and has primary responsibility for carrying out the mission and goals of the project. Qualifications include MS (PhD preferred) in a relevant area of social or physical science, basic knowledge of climate science, and evidence of ability to manage a multidisciplinary multi-investigator project. Read more at the OSU Jobs site.

The Regional Climate Extension Specialist will work with CDSC researchers to develop and evaluate collaborative outreach and engagement pilot programs designed to help communities better prepare for, and adapt to, a changing climate. Qualifications include MS (PhD preferred) in a relevant area of social or physical science, demonstrated ability to communicate science to non-scientists, and experience with outreach/extension. Read more at the OSU Jobs site.

Both positions are fixed-term, 12-month appointments with faculty research assistant status in OSU’s College of Oceanic and Atmospheric Sciences.

Oregon State University is an affirmative action/equal opportunity employer.

Newport celebrates NOAA fleet move

NOAA R/V Miller FreemanNEWPORT – The impending arrival of  the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Pacific research fleet is being celebrated in Newport this week with ceremony, festivities – and visits from a pair of the vessels that will eventually be berthed here.

Oregon Governor Ted Kulongoski, Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley and Congressman Kurt Schrader were among the officials expected on hand to break ground for the new facility, dubbed “Marine Operations Center – Pacific” – or NOAA MOC-P, in government parlance.

The ceremony was also expected to mark the end of a bureaucratic battle with the state of Washington, which has raised numerous objections to NOAA’s decision,  announced last year, to move its operations center from Seattle to the central Oregon coast.  Governor Kulongoski and others said they expected to get the final word that the agency had affirmed its decision just before this morning’s groundbreaking.

The $35 million, five-acre facility is scheduled to open in June 2011, with a staff of 175, including 110 officers. It will be home port to four ships and host visiting ships, as well. It will mean hundreds of family-wage jobs for the Newport area, and it’s expected to pump $19 million a year into a local economy hit hard by fishing cutbacks and the global economic slump.

The Port of Newport was able to make the winning bid largely because the state had offered $19.5 million in Oregon Lottery funds to the project, allowing the port to offer a 20-year lease for only $2.4 million.

This weekend’s celebration includes a family-style “welcome” picnic from 1-4 pm Sunday under a a tent at the construction site, just west of Oregon State University’s Hatfield Marine Science Center. The event, open to the public will include live music and  refreshments, and a chance for local residents to meet some of the team charged with getting the new operations center up and running.

In addition, if weather permits, two of the NOAA research vessels that will be relocating to Newport are expected to visit this weekend. the R/V Miller Freeman is expected to arrive Saturday afternoon, followed on Sunday by the R/V Bell M. Shimada, with an honorary Coast Guard escort and vessels from the Newport commercial fishing fleet on hand to welcome the ships and their crews.

(Photo of R/V Miller Freeman courtesy of striatic)

Earth Day 2010 logoFor Earth Day 2010, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) is highlighting the  implementation of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009.

NOAA provided $167 million in Recovery Act funding to 50 high-quality, high-priority coastal restoration projects around the country. The efforts are helping to jump-start the nation’s economy by supporting thousands of jobs as well as restoring fish and wildlife habitat.

In Oregon, the Act is providing $699,000 to the Fishing Industry Restoration Partnership, a project which has recruited commercial fishermen to begin retrieving an estimated 180 metric tons of  lost and abandoned crab  pots and other fishing gear off the central coast. The gear damages marine habitats and fouls fishing lines; its retrieval not only cleans up the seafloor ecosystem, but it also provides work for fishermen and their boats.

The NOAA grant resulted, in part, from a successful 2006-07   pilot project organized by the Oregon
Fishermen’s Cable Committee with funding and technical support from Oregon Sea Grant.

NOAA confirms plans to move research fleet to Newport

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration on Tuesday affirmed its intention to move its  its fleet of Pacific research vessels from Washington state to Newport, on the central Oregon Coast.

The General Accounting Office had asked the agency to review the planned move, first announced seven months ago, after officials in Washington State objected.

NOAA issued its finding Tuesday morning, saying none of the three competing Washington sites — Bellingham, Port Angeles or Lake Union — offers a practicable alternative to Newport.  Among other things, the report addressed a major objection – that the Newport site is located a flood plain – by noting measures that will be taken to mitigate flood risk; it also notes that the Washington contenders are also situated in flood plains.  The analysis  gave all three   Washington locations lower technical ratings – and higher estimated costs – than the Port of Newport site.

The report report has a 30-day public comment period, and Washington’s Sen. Maria Cantwell vowed to continue fighting the relocation. Oregon Senator Ron Wyden, however, called the report definitive.

Read more …

Read the full NOAA report (.pdf)