Mission: Sea Potato

Photo by Hannah Traggis

Research Question

Is sea potato invasive? How widespread is it?

You're invited

Scientist Lindsay Green and other researchers at University of New Hampshire are interested in the spread of the non-native algae sea potato, or Colpomenia peregrina. Its potential impact on Maine’s native species is unknown. It can be easily confused with sea cauliflower, a native species, so watch out!

Mission Steps

  1. Print the species cards for sea potato and sea cauliflower and a coastal data sheet
  2. Go into the field and collect data to make your claim of FOUND or NOT FOUND
  3. If you find sea potato, take note of what it is growing on
  4. Post your data!
Photo by Lindsay Green

Why this mission matters

New species are moving into the Gulf of Maine, however not all will be invasive. It is important to study these newcomers carefully and investigate if they change the ecosystem or coexist with native species.

By participating in this mission, you'll be on the frontier of investigating this new arrival.


I found this on Kettle cove beach and many other beaches in Maine. If this short thing helps you at all I can find it for you and take some pics for you

Hi aquazar11,

To submit your observations so that they will be reviewed by a species expert, see the comment, "To post your photos and reach..." that is posted below.

-The Vital Signs Team

at kettle cove, there are sea potatoes everywhere. I mean, as soon as I stepped on the beach I found one.
I came from the year 2050 to stop the spread of sea potatoes. They have taken over the world.

I found what I believe is a sea potato on july 24th at 7:30pm. We were at pine point beach off of sea rose lane in Scarborough. im trying to attach a pic but it wont let me.

To post your photos and reach the species expert you need to go to you "My Vital Signs" and select "Publish your data!"

This how-to guide will walk you through collecting and posting data http://vitalsignsme.org/how-citizen-scientists-collect-data-and-put-it-w....

Thanks for sharing your observations and this important data with the Vital Signs community and the species expert.

-The VS Team