Maritime Shorts

Oyster lease approved 

BAR HARBOR—After a multi-year application process that was further hampered by COVID-19, the Maine Department of Resources has approved a 10-year standard aquaculture lease for a 3.36-acre site in Western Bay. Matt Gerald of Western Bay Oyster Co. has been farming the site under a limited purpose aquaculture lease obtained in 2015. The site is near the head of Mount Desert Island, south of Old House Cove in Western Bay and near Windaway Lane. Gerald will cultivate oysters year-round using suspended and bottom culture techniques.  



DEP grant awarded  

MOUNT DESERT — Maine voters approved a bond package in 2018 that included $5 million dollars for infrastructure improvements at municipal stream crossings.  

The Maine Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) received 47 applications totaling over $5.5 million dollars in funding requests. One of the 42 stream crossing projects funded this round was awarded to Mount Desert’s Beech Hill Cross Road in the amount of $125,000.  

The awarded projects will benefit public infrastructure and safety by replacing failing culverts that are at risk of complete washout or collapse, reduce flooding and increase resiliency with the installation of larger, higher capacity and longer-lived crossings. The upgraded crossings will also benefit fish and wildlife by opening and reconnecting stream habitat fragmented by undersized and impassable culverts.  


Right whales spotted 

CAPE COD—A North Atlantic right whale mother and calf were spotted last week in Cape Cod Bay. The mother was identified as 15-year-old Millipede, #3520, and the calf was estimated to be about 3 months old. The pair was last spotted in early February in the waters near Florida.  


WoodenBoat classes 

BROOKLIN—After canceling its 2020 season due to the coronavirus last year, the WoodenBoat School will offer a slate of classes for the 2021 season. Reservations are now being accepted.  

For more information and a list of classes, visit 


Snyder steps down  

ROCKLAND — After 18 years with the Island Institute, eight of them as president, Rob Snyder has announced that he will be stepping down from his leadership role at the end of April. During his tenure, Snyder has been a driving force behind the growth and success of the Rockland-based nonprofit and its support for Maine’s island and coastal communities. 

Snyder will be going to work for ACME Smoked Fish Corp. as its first culture and sustainability officer. ACME Smoked Fish is a privately owned company based in Brooklyn, N.Y., with manufacturing facilities across the eastern United States, Chile and Denmark. 

Over the next several months, the board of trustees will be working with a recruitment firm to conduct a national search for the Island Institute’s next president. As of March 15, Rob Beams, chief operating officer at the Island Institute, will serve as interim president for the duration of the recruitment process. 

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