Amber Bratcher-Covino

Biological Scientist

Name
Amber Bratcher-Covino

Position
Biological Scientist

Section
Ecosystem Assessment and Restoration – Harmful Algal Blooms

Education
B.S. Biology, Marine Biology, Southwestern College
Ph.D. Marine Biology, University of Maine Research

Research Interests
HABs, molecular probes, biosensors, bloom dynamics, nutrients

Current Activity
I use an autoanalyzer to determine the inorganic nutrient content of water samples collected for our routine HAB monitoring program. Phytoplankton can utilize a variety of nutrients for survival and growth, and we are interested in studying how nutrient levels may affect bloom dynamics.

For my dissertation research, I developed a portable biosensor assay for the molecular detection of the harmful marine dinoflagellates Alexandrium fundyense and A. ostenfeldii. This assay is semi-quantitative and allows for rapid rRNA detection and discrimination of each species to provide an early-warning tool for HAB detection and monitoring.



FWC Facts:
American eels spend 10 to 20 years in fresh or brackish waters only to migrate hundreds of miles to spawn in saltwater in the Atlantic’s Sargasso Sea.

Learn More at AskFWC