Census of Marine Life

Website: http://www.coml.org/
Address: University of Southern Maine at GMRI, 350 Commercial Street, Portland, ME 04101
Contact: Suzy Ryan
Emailsryan@usm.maine.edu Phone: 207-228-1680

Mission: (CoML) is a growing global network of researchers in more than 80 nations engaged in a ten-year initiative to assess and explain the diversity, distribution, and abundance of marine life in the oceans — past, present, and future. The world’s first comprehensive Census of Marine Life-past, present, and future – will be released in 2010.

Ocean Literacy:

Principle 1: The Earth has one big ocean with many features
As part of the global Census of Marine Life, the emphasis on the “global ocean” is present in much of the education and outreach, including news releases, publications and on-line services. See www.coml.org for more information.

Principle 5: The ocean supports a diversity of life and ecosystems.
The Gulf of Maine Area program is largely focused on biodiversity and ecosystems through funded research, lectures, meetings, databases, newsletter, blog and other outreach. Some examples include: – established species lists and related spatial data in Gulf of Maine Register of Marine Species and OBIS. – current research and publications highlighted in “Discover the Gulf of Maine” quarterly newsletter – cosponsored the Gulf of Maine Symposium in St. Andrews in Oct 2009 – the annual student video contest “Living on the Ocean Planet”, adopted by NOSB – public lecture series, “Life in the Gulf of Maine: Past, Present, Future” with GMRI in 2009 – collaborative blog, “Celebrating Darwin” with USM and CoML – Census presentation “Celebrating the Ocean’s Diversity” for GOMMEA – sharing of intertidal sampling protocol, NaGISA, with NEOSEC and others.

Principle 6: The ocean is connected to us and we are connected to it.
This year, we are working with COMPASS on an education piece for policy makers and managers called “Biodiversity Matters in the Gulf of Maine” with an emphasis on human impacts to biodiversity, and the role of biodiversity in sustaining healthy ecosystems.

Principle 7: The ocean is largely unexplored.
As part of the global Census of Marine Life, the emphasis on the “unknown” is present in much of the education and outreach, including news releases, publications and on-line services. See www.coml.org.

Ocean Observing:

Researchers with the GoMA Census of Marine Life use ocean observing data in order to better explain diversity, abundance and distribution of marine life and the relationship to physical parameters, such as temperature and currents in the Gulf of Maine ecosystem.