Intensive Study: Terrestrial and Marine Conservation Biology in Maine

Last taught August 2017 and is expected to be taught again during the Summer of 2021.

Please contact Environmental Science and Policy Program Director, Jerry Burgess, for more information.

420.618 Terrestrial and Marine Conservation Biology

Intensive Study – Terrestrial and Marine Conservation Biology (TMCB) in Maine


Johns Hopkins University (AAP Environmental Sciences and Policy), is pleased to announce plans to teach an in-field class home-based at the College of the Atlantic (COA), Bar Harbor, Maine, the field portion of which is scheduled to begin at the end of July 2017.  We will spend our time in and around Acadia National Park with a day trip on COA’s research vessel the Osprey to investigate research on either Mount Desert Rock or Great Duck Island, to look for whales and pinnipeds, and take a day trip to the Schoodic Peninsula via ferry. Additional day trips will be scheduled for the Schoodic Peninsula (via ferry from COA’s dock to Winter Harbor) and to the new Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument, just east of Mt. Katahdin, Maine’s highest mountain.


Summer 2017 semester with course meeting intensely from Jul. 30 – Aug. 5, 2017, in Acadia National Park, Maine.

Course Description

Both the Maine coast and mountainous, interior Maine provide a stunning and ideal venue for learning about the myriad conservation biology issues, challenges and solutions in dealing with both marine and terrestrial conservation.  These habitats provide an ideal “living laboratory” for studying, understanding and implementing conservation biology.   Acadia National Park, established in 1919, will provide us opportunities to investigate the only fjord in the Atlantic Northeast, Somes Sound; carefully assess the ocean-land interface, e.g., Otter Cliffs, Thunder Hole, Sand Beach, and the Ocean Path Trail; hike Cadillac Mountain — the first place to see the sunrise from October to early March in the continental U.S.; time permitting visit Long Pond and hike the Ship Harbor Nature Trail; and spend a day “at sea” investigating cutting edge marine conservation issues up close.  Additionally, day trips will be scheduled for the Schoodic Peninsula (via ferry from COA’s dock to Winter Harbor) and to the new Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument, just east of Mt. Katahdin, Maine’s highest mountain — designated by President Obama as our newest National Monument in August 2016.  Since this is a brand new Monument, we’ll investigate how to help implement its mission including through a day hike assessing Katahdin Lake off the Loop Road.

Prerequisite: 420.611 Principles and Methods of Ecology, equivalent course, or experience.

Intensive Study – Terrestrial and Marine Conservation Biology (TMCB) in Maine

Mt. Katahdin from the Katahdin Loop Road, Katahdin Woods and Waters Natl. Monument

Additional Details

Schedules permitting, leading experts will talk to us about challenges, solutions and best practices in dealing with conservation needs.  We will have an opportunity to investigate, assess how to resolve, and address many issues. These include but are not limited to rapid warming and acidification of the Gulf of Maine; fishing gear/plastic pollution entanglement of Atlantic right whales, other large cetaceans, pinnipeds, and seabirds; impacts of noise on marine mammals; fishery management in the surrounding waters; raptor assessments including Bald Eagles, Peregrine Falcons, Ospreys, and Golden Eagles; nesting challenges for seabirds such as gulls, terns, razorbills, guillemots, and Atlantic Puffins; impacts of growing cruise ship traffic; wildlife impacts of commercial wind development on the Schoodic Peninsula; the botany and geology of Acadia and Katahdin Woods; the importance of land conservation; impacts to moose and their habitats from climate change; human-wildlife interactions; management of imperiled species including Canada lynx, the eastern population of Golden Eagles, Endangered wild Atlantic salmon and the alewife; land-use challenges in northern Maine; Tribal conservation issues with the Passamaquoddy and Penobscot Nations; and much more.  The course is designed to teach you the key components of conservation biology in terrestrial, aquatic, and marine environments, including learning how to identify, avoid and/or minimize impacts, and implement solutions. We will plan to spend most of each day in the field.

Intensive Study – Terrestrial and Marine Conservation Biology (TMCB) in Maine

Gorham Mountain

Course Schedule
This course will be taught during the AAP Summer 2017 semester, Summer II
Jun. 28, 2017 Preparatory materials made available online
Jul. 30 to Aug. 5, 2017 Intensive study in Acadia National Park, Maine
Aug. 8, 2017 Due date for the final project
Aug. 15, 2017  Last day of the summer semester


Al Manville, PhD, CWB (lead instructor)

Al Manville Glacier National Park

Dr. Al Manville was a senior wildlife biologist with the Division of Migratory Bird Management, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, before retiring in 2014. He continues to work as the principal consultant for a wildlife and conservation firm he created on issues which he led for the Service. These deal with impacts to birds, bats and their habitats from communication towers, power lines, commercial wind and solar energy development, buildings and glass, bridges, lighting, and fishing gear, among others.

Dr. Manville received his B.S. from Allegheny College with a research focus on black bears, and an M.S. from the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point in natural resources and wildlife management studying the parasites and diseases of black bears, while also conducting waterfowl and upland game bird research. His Ph.D. from Michigan State University is in wildlife ecology and management, conducting a three-year radio telemetry study on black bears while also pursuing various avian assessments. In previous positions, Dr. Manville was trained as a Mandarin Chinese interpreter for the National Security Agency while serving in the U.S. Navy, he has been designated as a “Certified Wildlife Biologist” by The Wildlife Society, and has served in such capacities as Big Game Records Coordinator for the Boone and Crockett Club, Vice President/Director of Science Policy for Defenders of Wildlife, a member of the U.S. Scientific Delegation on High Seas Driftnetting, Executive Director of the Adirondack Mountain Club, a member of the Steering Committee of the Endangered Species Coalition, and was offered a position as branch chief with his Division in 1997.

Dr. Manville has testified more than 40 times before Congress and other governmental bodies, published more than 170 professional and popular papers, chapters and book reviews, and given more than 160 invited public presentations. He has served on the Editorial Advisory Board of the Nature Conservancy Magazine, was the wildlife consultant for the Walt Disney/Touchstone Pictures production of the movie White Fang, and has conducted hundreds of radio and television interviews, quoted extensively in the print and electronic media. In addition to extensive research he has conducted on black and brown/grizzly bears (including in Glacier National Park), wolves, marine mammals and seabirds, he has been actively involved in teaching. Since 2000, he has been an affiliate professor and instructor for Johns Hopkins University, served as faculty on the U.S.D.A. Graduate School for more than 15 years, taught several courses at Michigan State University, and was an Affiliate Professor of Biology at George Mason University before joining USFWS.

Jerry L. Burgess, PhD (Co-instructor)

Dr. Burgess received his doctorate in ecology from Johns Hopkins University. He has research interests are highly interdisciplinary utilizing the disciplines of biology, ecology, geology, and soil science to explore community dynamics and invasive ecology in urban, rural and forested landscapes. Originally from the South, he became interested in the natural sciences after traveling into coal mines with his father. Trained as a metamorphic and structural petrologist, in his early research he has used petrologic and geochemical tools to investigate igneous and metamorphic rocks and relate their petrogenesis to the growth and evolution the Canadian Appalachians.

Dr. Burgess seeks to understand the edaphic relationship between geologic substrate, soils and plants using a complementary suite of approaches that integrate field observations with novel techniques (e.g. stable isotopes) and controlled environmental systems (e.g. growth chambers, greenhouse settings) to address questions that intersect plant physiological ecology, soil ecology and geology in an ecosystem context.

Intensive Study – Terrestrial and Marine Conservation Biology (TMCB) in Maine

Otter Cliffs


College of the Atlantic (COA), Bar Harbor, Maine, the field portion of which is scheduled to begin Sunday, Jul. 30, ending on Saturday, Aug. 5, 2017.  COA will provide housing, all meals, classroom space, computer access (wi-fi and landline), a museum, transportation — and schedule permitting — a day trip on COA’s research vessel the Osprey.

Tuition $3,819 (subject to change)
Trip fee $1,050
This includes transportation from the airport and to all transportation during the field portion of course as well as all lodging and food (breakfast/lunch/dinner). Incidentals are not included.
Travel Variable. Transportation from student home is student responsibility. Transportation from Bangor airport to lodging in ANP and throughout the course will be provided and is calculated as part of the Trip fee.


Registration for the course will open on Jan. 15, 2017, and close Feb. 28, 2017. Students will register for this course in SIS. Payment of trip fee and tuition is due at the time of registration (tuition $3,819 + trip fee $1,050). If a student decides to drop this course, $500 of the tuition is non-refundable, regardless of a student’s payment method choice (financial aid, employer assistance, tuition remission, etc.). Please note: this course does not follow the regular tuition refund schedule and ALL tuition and fees for this course are NON-REFUNDABLE after the close closes at the end of February.

The course needs 10 people to run. Refunds will be made if there are not enough people to run the course. The maximum number of people for the course is 15. Registration will be on a first-come, first-served basis with priority given to ESP degree candidates. Do not purchase travel or make other investments in your trip until you hear from the course Point of Contact that there are enough participants to run the trip. This will be determined by the beginning of March, possibly earlier.

Intensive Study – Terrestrial and Marine Conservation Biology (TMCB) in Maine

Cadillac Mountain

Student Emergency Contact Information

Students must update their emergency contact information in SIS by following these instructions:

  1. Log in to
  2. Hover over the “Personal Information” tab
  3. Select “Emergency Contact”
  4. Complete “Emergency Contact” information

Important Forms

Please visit the Student Travel page for information about waiver, liability, and travel and health insurance. All participants must complete:

Dr. Albert Manville (, a member of AAP’s faculty since 2000 — also a part-time Maine resident and former employee in Acadia — will be the principal instructor for this class. Dr. Jerry Burgess ( will be the point of contact and co-instructor. Please contact Dr. Burgess for questions and to express interest in this class.

Intensive Study – Terrestrial and Marine Conservation Biology (TMCB) in Maine

Day Mountain in Acadia