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Divers: Get Trained To Protect Local Waters

August 8, 2007

Are you a recreational diver? NH Sea Grant needs your help. A new program developed by NH Sea Grant/UNH Cooperative Extension is training volunteer divers to identify and track invasive marine species. Divers interested in volunteering are invited to attend a training session on Monday, Aug. 20, from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Urban Forestry Center, 45 Elwyn Road, Portsmouth.

Introduced species often become invasive, driving out native species and threatening ecosystems. Once these unwanted species have become established in a new habitat, they’re practically impossible to eradicate. To prevent uninvited guests from becoming established, early detection is key.

Now divers can help to find and track introduced marine species. Divers will be trained to identify the top 10 “Most Wanted” invasive species in New England waters. They’ll report on the presence and location of those species, helping scientists by tracking the spread of recent introductions and keeping an eye out for new invaders.

Divers interested in attending the training session should pre-register with Mark Wiley, NH Sea Grant’s extension specialist in marine education (603-749-1565; mark.wiley@unh.edu).

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