Despite cold and rainy weather, a group of eighth grade students ventured out into the mudflats behind the Wiscasset Middle School onto Polly Clark Cove June 11. Their mission was to continue a 4-year clam seeding study.
Dr. Brian Beal, professor at University of Maine Machias (UMM) and Richard Forrest, member of the Wiscasset Shellfish Committee, joined Cindy Collamore, Sue Kistenmacher, Erin Haggett and some very hearty eighth grade students for a morning full of hands-on science.
Beal has been working with the eighth graders at Wiscasset Middle School trying to determine the best conditions for seeding clams.
Forrest and others have dumped thousands upon thousands of crushed clam shells onto the flats in Wiscasset to see if the calcium in the shell will help to counter the acidic conditions of the mud and also attract baby clam spat. Preliminary findings are showing that the shells are indeed helping to reseed the flats.
Beal and two of his students at UMM directed the group across the mud as they seeded the flats with pots utilizing several different combinations of clams, mud, shells and netting.