Intertidal Ecology

Project overview:
Intertidal Ecology Undergraduate Researchers collect biodiversity data in intertidal transects permanently established around Appledore Island as part of a long-term monitoring program using National Park Service protocols. These transects are critical to evaluate the effects of climate change and introduced species in the Gulf of Maine, as well as to document shifts in species distribution and abundance. Researchers identify all species in their transects, analyze transect data, and design future studies. The program provides expertise in New England intertidal organisms, data analysis, and excellent training for employment in marine biodiversity surveys.

Appropriate coursework in marine invertebrates and phycology is strongly recommended. Previous experience at SML is preferred, but not required. Relevant SML courses include: Ecology & the Marine Environment, Field Marine Invertebrate Biology, and the Shoals Research Apprenticeship.

Project Mentors:
Dr. Kylla Benes (Davidson Honors College, University of Montana)

Lauren Pandori (Marine Biologist, Cabrillo National Monument)

Dr. Jennifer Dijkstra (Research Assistant Professor, Center for Coastal and Ocean Mapping, University of New Hampshire)

Dates: TBD

SML Research Symposium: TBD

Stipend: $200/week
Includes room & board for 3 weeks, and roundtrip vessel transportation from Portsmouth, NH to Appledore Island. Researchers are responsible for their own transportation to/from Portsmouth, NH at the beginning and end of the program.

Four researchers will be selected.

View past internship posters here: 2010, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015.


Photo of Intertidal Interns at a transect site

Intertidal Ecology Undergraduate Researchers collecting transect data in a quadrat.


Photo of a group of students in the intertidal zone down by the water's edge

Field site on the south end of Appledore Island.


Photo of a student in the intertidal zone with a transect quadrat

In the field, quadrat in hand.


To apply:

  • 2023 Application coming soon
  • Application Deadline: TBD
  • Applicants should be prepared to upload (as separate files): cover letter, resume/CV, and unofficial transcripts.
  • Request two letters of recommendation. At least one letter must be from a professor/faculty member. The second can be from a graduate student TA or employer.
  • Undergraduates in all majors may apply.
  • Priority is given to students who have previous SML experience.

Email Dr. David Buck