Frenchman Bay Research

Current Research

In 2018, the Schoodic Ferry is excited to welcome several visiting scientists aboard! Allied Whale research assistant Kate Pielmeier will be conducting visual marine mammal surveys aboard, and pairing that data with fixed acoustic marine mammal monitoring data to gain a better understanding of how harbor porpoise utilize Frenchman Bay.  Marine mammal species likely to be encountered include during these surveys include harbor seals, grey seals, harbor porpoise, and minke whales.



In 2018, the Schoodic Ferry is searching for trained volunteer bird observers to help continue our pelagic bird surveys. Bird species likely to be encountered include razorbills, black guillemots, eider ducks, northern gannets, double-crested cormorants, great cormorants, greater black-backed gulls, herring gulls, laughing gulls, ring-billed gulls, Bonaparte’s gulls, occasional shearwaters, occasional storm petrels, and migrating bald eagles and hawks. If you would like to participate, simply email us at [email protected]

Also in 2018, College of the Atlantic undergraduate student Analise Wittenberg will climb aboard June – August to help Dr. Kaitlyn Mullen, the Schoodic Ferry’s captain, collect physical oceanographic data including temperature profiles, salinity profiles, pH samples, turbidity assessments, and water clarity assessments in an effort to better understand microhabitats in Frenchman Bay.

Finally during June – August Analise will also be conducting her own zooplankton research, working on integrating microplastic sampling into the existing zooplankton sampling program utilizing nets of varying mesh size. When combined with basic physical oceanographic survey data, this study will help local scientists assess if lobster, crab and urchin larvae molt timings are shifting as sea surface temperatures shift, as well as the help scientists determine the quantity of microplastics present in Frenchman Bay surface waters..


Finally, keep an eye open in August and September for international Marine Mammal Observer Clare Echlin (all the way from Scotland!) and marine scientist Sarah Markwood. If work allows, both may be stopping by for special programs.

Interested in seeing our science in action? Call 207-801-9444 for weekly science schedules aboard the Schoodic Ferry!

Interested in being a Research Partner?

Providing affordable, sustainable public marine transportation to the Frenchman Bay community while simultaneously conducting marine monitoring studies.


You can reach us by mail at:

28 Knox Road, Bar Harbor, ME 04609

We’ll see you in 2020!