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Category for Research

Virginia Sea Grant offers funding opportunities for researchers, graduate students, and undergraduate students.

Before applying for any Virginia Sea Grant funding, make sure your project fits within the goals of our 2010-2014 Strategic Plan.


Annual Research Portfolios


Featured Research Stories


Fellow Looks at Oyster Genes and Survival

Fellow Looks at Oyster Genes and Survival

Joseph Matt will examine whether there is a relationship between oyster brood stock origin and triploid mortality, which could help commercial growers make more informed decisions about the oysters they plant.

Fellow to Study Young Eel, Croaker, Menhaden

Fellow to Study Young Eel, Croaker, Menhaden

Cindy Marin Martinez’s research will focus on three important species in the Chesapeake Bay: Atlantic croaker, American eel, and Atlantic menhaden. She hopes to determine whether the population of larval fishes in the York River is a good proxy for the amount of larval fishes moving into the Bay.

Fellow Researches Nutrients in Coastal Virginia Wetlands

Fellow Researches Nutrients in Coastal Virginia Wetlands

Joseph Morina will research the nutrient cycling of wetlands and the effects this has on downstream coastal ecosystems. He will also study the response of these systems to increasing sea levels, saltwater intrusion, and other effects of climate change.

Fellow Studies Blue Catfish in Chesapeake Bay

Fellow Studies Blue Catfish in Chesapeake Bay

Since their introduction, blue catfish in the Chesapeake Bay have grown numerous and large. Joseph Schmitt will research blue catfish as a non-native species in Virginia.

Fellow Studies Seagrasses and Greenhouse Gases

Fellow Studies Seagrasses and Greenhouse Gases

As a graduate research fellow, Matthew Oreska will research seagrass beds’ release of greenhouse gases in South Bay, Virginia.

Fellow Investigates What Makes a Quality Oyster Reef

Fellow Investigates What Makes a Quality Oyster Reef

Melissa Karp will investigate the effects of species diversity within an oyster reef as well as the structural complexity of the reef and the salinity of the water.

Fellow Researches How Coastal Grasses Protect the Shore

Fellow Researches How Coastal Grasses Protect the Shore

Yongqian Yang will research how coastal grasses affect wave patterns and can protect shorelines.

Fellow Researches Disease Affecting American Eel

Fellow Researches Disease Affecting American Eel

Zoemma Warshafsky will be researching a parasitic nematode as a possible cause for the shrinking population of American eel.

Charlottesville Joins In On Oyster Shell Recycling

Charlottesville Joins In On Oyster Shell Recycling

The Virginia Oyster Shell Recycling Program, which recycles shell from local businesses to restoration sites in the Bay, has expanded to Charlottesville.

Tracking Oyster Restoration with Genetic Tests

Tracking Oyster Restoration with Genetic Tests

A Virginia Institute of Marine Science graduate student is using genetic markers to assess oyster restoration in the Chesapeake Bay.

A Surprising Possible Advantage of Oyster Disease Tolerance

A Surprising Possible Advantage of Oyster Disease Tolerance

In a VIMS study, the more an oyster was infected with the disease Perkinsus marinus, the less likely it was to harbor vibrios, leading scientists to take a closer look at breeding for disease tolerance.

Proposals for Regional Coastal Resilience Research Due Feb. 4

Proposals for Regional Coastal Resilience Research Due Feb. 4

This funding opportunity seeks regional research proposals that address coastal resilience to sea level rise and/or coastal flooding in the Mid-Atlantic region, including but not limited to ecological, physical, economic, and/or social dimensions.

Accepting Coastal Management Fellowship Applications

Accepting Coastal Management Fellowship Applications

The Coastal Management Fellowship is a two-year fellowship in coastal resource management and policy for postgraduate students.

Mark Brush (right) uses a smart board projector to demo the new model. ©Janet Krenn/VASG

Enduser Input Shapes Delmarva Bays Planning Tool

As part of the Delmarva Modeling Project, researchers met with endusers to develop a new tool aimed to improve the condition of Delmarva’s coastal bays.

cownose ray gulf of mexico

Mysterious Cownose Ray Species in Gulf of Mexico

DNA analysis revealed evidence there could be an undocumented cownose ray species in the Gulf of Mexico that genetically resembles the Brazilian cownose ray.

DNA Provides Clues in Cownose Ray Population Mystery

DNA Provides Clues in Cownose Ray Population Mystery

A research tool more often linked to forensic science is helping to crack the case of a marine mystery: how many populations of cownose rays are out there?

Environmental Factors on Fish, White Shrimp Stock Assessment

Environmental Factors on Fish, White Shrimp Stock Assessment

There’s still a lot to learn about all the factors that influence the abundance and distribution of fish stocks. Mark Stratton of Virginia Institute of Marine Science will use quantitative modeling to investigate the effects of human, food web, and environmental factors on dozens of near shore fish populations in the US South Atlantic. He […]

Looking at How Changing Habitat Affects Spot, Atlantic Croaker

Looking at How Changing Habitat Affects Spot, Atlantic Croaker

  Some researchers suspect that seasonal oxygen deficiencies and rising water temperatures are causing fish in the Chesapeake Bay to move to suboptimal habitats. These habitats may be contributing to increased mortality rates and decreased population growth in fish species. Ben Marcek of Virginia Institute of Marine Science will use data on water temperature, oxygen […]

How Do Barrier Islands Respond to Hurricanes?

How Do Barrier Islands Respond to Hurricanes?

  The creation of a channel on a barrier island and the landward transport of sediment during storms have the potential to devastate coastal environments. Using a numerical model, Stephanie Smallegan of Virginia Tech will investigate the processes that govern these occurrences on Assateague Island, VA. Findings may improve predictive tools for storm damage, helping […]

If Invasive Seagrass Takes Over, Will Blue Crab Know the Difference?

If Invasive Seagrass Takes Over, Will Blue Crab Know the Difference?

Defining the effects of habitat availability on population dynamics may be a critical part of creating sustainable fishing policies. Megan Wood of Virginia Institute of Marine Science will develop a model to better understand blue crab distribution patterns and will study the effects of Gracilaria vemiculophylla, an exotic red alga, in blue crab nursery habitats. […]

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