The Strandline


New York State Marine Education Newsletter

December 2015

Strandline (n): the high water mark; the area at the top of a beach where debris is deposited.


President's Note

Holiday Greetings NYSMEANs,

The annual holiday party at Tackapausha Museum was a festive event with a positive energy amongst NYSMEAns. Tackapausha Museum was filled with interesting exhibits and live animals mostly representing local Long Island wildlife. Downstairs there was a reptile room full of interesting non-native species. Thanks to everyone who attended the holiday lecture and party!

Holiday lecture presentation by John Turner. Credit: Joel Turet

The speaker, John Turner, presented a lecture and slideshow on Plum Island. He talked about the history of Plum Island from early inhabitants to a lighthouse built in 1827. It was then privately owned until the US Government purchased it. The US created Fort Terry on the island which during WWII was used as an anti-submarine base. John shared that the USDA established the Plum Island Animal Disease Center in the 1950s to actively study hoof and mouth disease as well as, other diseases. Currently, the US Department of Homeland Security runs the facilities and under law could be sold to private investors. John talked about the Preserve Plum Island Coalition (PPIC) which is actively pursuing the island to be  a National Wildlife Refuge.  

Other NYSMEA News...
  • We have a NYSMEA board meeting planned for Sunday, January 24, 2016 at the Metropolitan Waterfront Alliance offices at 217 Water Street, Suite 300, New York, NY from 11:00 A.M.-2:00 P.M. Please join us! Register online at
  • NYSMEA Seal and Seabird cruise (date to be determined)
  • SCONYC conference on April 16, 2016 at Stuyvesant High School
  • US Navy Sea Perch underwater Robotics Competition on April 23, 2016
  • It’s My Estuary Day on May 14, 2016

Save the dates!
  • The NMEA conference is in Orlando, FL from June 25 - July 1, 2016. Go to FMSEA.ORG/NMEA16 for more information.
  • The 2016 NYSMEA Annual Conference will be held at Stony Brook University’s Southampton campus in late September, 2016.

Happy and healthy new year to everyone!


Lane Rosen
NYSMEA President 
    • When
      24 Jan 2016
      11:00 AM - 2:00 PM
    • Location
      Metropolitan Waterfront Alliance, 217 Water Street, Suite 300, New York, NY 

    Please attend and share your administrative knowledge and skills (or build new knowledge and strengthen new skills) to help produce worthwhile events as part of a group of dedicated, talented professionals. Then, enjoy a walk around the harbor.

  • NYSMEA member Jan Porinchak Connected Art and Marine Science at Teacher Workshop

    Jan C. Porinchak of Nature Works Scientific Illustration and Marine Biologist Amanda Levine have recently been teaming up to present a series of programs highlighting the connections of Art and Science. Both NYSMEA members have strong Science illustration and science backgrounds.

    Molloy College was the venue where they taught an exciting and engaging class which highlighted the natural history, life cycle, and role in the ecosystem of Horseshoe Crabs. The audience were art teachers at the annual “Balanced Mind” Conference. The teachers learned about the role of illustration as a method and tool for scientific inquiry and understanding. Each teacher received the preserved molt of a Horseshoe Crab to observe. These were then used a basis of a detailed drawing completed at the session. The teachers used diagrams provide by Jan and Amanda to identify the anatomy of these fascinating invertebrates.

    As a bonus, the Chairman of Molloy’s  Earth and Environmental Sciences apartment,  Dr. John T. Tanacredi, made a special presentation to the group. He discussed the challenges to Horseshoe Crab populations worldwide, and how the Center for Environmental Research and Coastal Oceans Monitoring (CERCOM), is at the forefront of stewardship of this species. Dr. Tanacredi, who is the director of CERCOM, invited the enthusiastic teachers to involve their students in CERCOM activities at Molloy.

    Mr. Porinchak and Ms. Levine also presented an overview of common marine life of the Long Island Sound to members of the Guild of Natural Science Illustrators, at the Bronx Botanical Gardens. Amanda Levine created an excellent digital presentation highlighting the major animal and plant species in the Sound, and outlined how these fauna and flora are adapted to their environment, and interact. Ms. Levine also engaged the group in a discussion of how human activity has affected the local environment. Jan Porinchak and Ms. Levine brought a number of live and preserved specimens to the presentation to give the illustrators an up-close and personal look at the animals that they were illustrating. A favorite subject for the artists was a freshly caught skate! Some excellent drawings were produced at this session, and Porinchak and Levine look forward to presenting for the Guild of Natural Science Illustrators (GNSI) and other organizations in the near future.
NYSMEA 146 Suffolk Hall Stony Brook, NY 11794 Phone: 631-632-9216 
NYSMEA is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization 

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