Coastal Science (geology, geochemistry, GIS/mapping)

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Meagan Eagle Gonneea

Coastal wetlands provide important ecosystem services, including fish nurseries, bird habitat, storm surge protection, and carbon sequestration in peat. My research focuses on how these habitats adapt to a variety of stressors, including sea level rise and hydraulic management of tidal flow. This summer I will begin an intensive field season studying how different management actions, specifically digging mosquito ditches to enhance drainage, affects the elevation capital and carbon burial capacity of salt marshes. This is a collaborative project with scientists and land managers from WHOI (A. Spivak, A. Wang), the Waquoit Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve, the Fish and Wildlife Service, and local management officials. We will evaluate marsh history through sediment cores, and assess vegetation and elevation patterns. We will also employ novel structure from motion (drone) technology during this study. We are looking for an intern who is interested in coastal wetlands, with potential projects ranging from sediment coring and analysis to vegetation analysis to mapping products.

USGS Coastal and Marine Science Center