(information last updated January 2019)

Ongoing Projects:

Federal Project(s) Operating in the State:

The Southern Maine Volunteer Beach Profile Monitoring Program, which is run by the University of Maine Cooperative Extension and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (“NOAA”) Sea Grant Program, recruits volunteers every month to monitor beach contours. Southern Maine Volunteer Beach Profile Monitoring Program, Me. Sea Grant, (last visited Feb. 7, 2019). This data helps identify “seasonal, annual, and… long-term trends in beach erosion and accretion” to inform beach management decisions at the local and state levels. Id. 


The Lake Stewards of Maine (“LSM”) Volunteer Lake Monitoring Program is primarily funded by grants from the Maine Department of Environmental Protection (“DEP”) and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Current Donors & Sponsors, Lake Stewards of Me., (last visited Feb. 7, 2019). LSM protects “Maine lakes through widespread citizen participation in the gathering and dissemination of credible scientific information pertaining to lake health.” Mission, Lake Stewards of Me., (last visited Feb. 7, 2019). 

State Project(s):

Maine DEP runs a volunteer water quality monitoring program: the Volunteer River Monitoring Program (“VRMP”).  See Volunteer River Monitoring Program (VRMP), Me. Dep’t of Envtl. Protection, (last visited Feb. 7, 2019). 


The Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife manages multiple citizen science projects. See Citizen Science Projects, Me. Dep’t of Inland Fisheries & Wildlife, (last visited Feb. 7, 2019). The Department is starting a new citizen science project called the Maine Bird Atlas that will run from 2018–2022.  See Maine Bird Atlas, Me. Dep’t of Inland Fisheries & Wildlife, (last visited Feb. 7, 2019).  The program seeks to answer how many breeding and wintering birds exist in Maine, and where they can be found.  Id.

Collection of Information:

Scientific Collector’s Permits:

“An educational or scientific collection permit is required by any person who wishes to take, transport or possess wildlife and their parts or products for scientific research or educational purposes[.]” Code Me. R. tit. 09-137 Ch. 6, § 6.02; see also Fish and Wildlife, Forms, Me. Dep’t of inland Fisheries & Wildlife, (last visited Feb. 7, 2019).

Trespassing Laws:

Criminal Liability for Trespass Despite Lack of Notice:

No.  In order for entry upon property to constitute criminal trespass, the property must be “posted . . . in a manner reasonably likely to come to the attention of intruders or . . . fenced or otherwise enclosed in a manner designed to exclude intruders.” Me. Rev. Stat. Ann. tit. 17-A, § 402(1)(C).  

Civil Liability for Trespass:

“[A] person, knowing that the person is not licensed or privileged to do so,” who trespasses “commits a civil violation for which a fine of not less than $100 and not more than $500 may be adjudged.”  Me. Rev. Stat. Ann. tit. 12, § 10657(1)–(2).

Drone Laws:

State Parks:

The Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry’s Bureau of Parks and Lands prohibits the use of drones in “Maine State Parks, Historic Sites, or DACF Boat Launches without direct oversight and guidance of an approved law enforcement agency or by the issue of a Special Activity Permit.” See Policy/State Law, Rules for State Parks and Historic Sites, Me. Dep’t of Agric., Conservation & Forestry, (last visited Feb. 7, 2019); see also Bureau of Parks and Lands, Drones, Unmanned Aircraft System (UAS) (n.d.),

Stalking Laws:

Criminal Law:

“A person is guilty of stalking if:

A. The actor intentionally or knowingly engages in a course of conduct directed at or concerning a specific person that would cause a reasonable person:

        (1) To suffer serious inconvenience or emotional distress;

        (2) To fear bodily injury or to fear bodily injury to a close relation;

        (3) To fear death or to fear the death of a close relation;

        (4) To fear damage or destruction to or tampering with property; or

        (5) To fear injury to or the death of an animal owned by or in the possession and control of that specific person.” 

    Me. Rev. Stat. Ann. tit. 17-A, § 210-A(1)(A).


Use of Information:

Although incomplete, our research has not found any provisions relating to the use of information collected by citizens in enforcement or administrative/legislative actions.

Evidentiary Standards:

Pleading a Claim:

Requires certification that there “is good ground to support” the claim.  Me. R. Civ. P. 11(a).

Authentication or Chain of Custody:


“To satisfy the requirement of authenticating or identifying an item of evidence, the proponent must produce evidence sufficient to support a finding that the item is what the proponent claims it is.”  Me. R. Evid. 901(a).

Expert Testimony:

The standard governing the admission of expert witness testimony is grounded in Maine Rule of Evidence 402 and the two-part standard described in Searles v. Fleetwood Homes of Pa., Inc., 878 A.2d 509 (Me. 2005): “A proponent of expert testimony must establish that (1) the testimony is relevant pursuant to [Me. R. Evid. 401], and (2) it will assist the trier of fact in understanding the evidence or determining a fact in issue.”  Id. at 516–16 (citing State v. Williams, 388 A.2d 500, 516 (Me.1978)).


“[T]he testimony must also meet a threshold level of reliability.”  Id. at 516 (quoting In re Sarah C., 864 A.2d 162, 165 (Me. 2004)).


Please note that this discussion is not moderated by the Emmett Environmental Law & Policy Clinic.