Anna Chirnside

Department of Entomology and Wildlife Ecology

Anastasia Chirnside

Assistant Professor Entomology Wildlife Ecology
Civil and Environmental Engineering


Resources and Links


  • Ph.D. – University of Delaware – 2004 Civil and Environmental Engineering
  • M.S. – University of Delaware – 1981 Plant Science
  • B.S. with Distinction – University of Delaware – 1977 Plant Science

Regular Courses Taught

  • ENWC 103 – Land and Water Management, Spring
  • ENWC 314 – Comparative Terrestrial and Marine Ecology, Fall


  • Water Quality and Waste Management
  • Bioremediation and Mycoremediation
  • Stormwater Control and Treatment
  • Green Infrastructure and Low Impact Development
  • Analytical Chemistry, Quality Control and Quality Assurance
  • Certified Professional Agronomist
  • Certified Pesticide Applicator


  • ENWC Soil and Water Quality Analytical Laboratory

Professional Activities

  • American Society of Agronomy
  • American Society of Civil Engineers
  • Environmental Water Resources Institute
  • American Society of Agricultural & Biological Engineers
  • American Water Resources Association
  • Golden Key National Honor Society
  • National Society of Professional Engineers
  • Soil Science Society of America

Chirnside Applied Environmental Engineering Soil & Water Quality Lab

Dr. Anastasia E. M. Chirnside has been involved in environmental quality research at the University of Delaware for over 38 years. Her research investigates the effect that urban and rural land use activities have on soil and water quality in order to develop Best Management Practices that protect the environment.  Specific research interests include wastewater treatment and animal manure management. The research program has been concerned with the movement of pesticides and nutrients in agronomic practices. Her research has assessed the effect of tillage systems, irrigation practices, soil amendments, and cropping systems on ground and surface water quality.  

Specific research projects that we have been involved in include algal assays on wastewater degradation, the study of the fate and movement of pollutants in soil and water, land application of biosolids, fly ash as soil amendments for plant growth, manure management, evaluation of alternate on-site wastewater systems, disposal methods for deceased poultry, nitrogen movement inside chicken houses, evaluation of flooring barriers in chicken production to reduce nitrogen movement, and development of a side-dresser for manure application in agronomic crop fields.

Currently, our research work has been in the area of bioremediation of recalcitrant compounds in soil, water, wastewater and manures. We are also involved in bench scale research in the area of mycoremediation. Through this research, we have worked with bacterial cultures and the white rot fungi, Phanerochaete chrysosporium and Pleurotus ostreatus, to reduce the nutrient content of food processing wastewater and to remove pathogens from dairy manure.

Current Projects:

Evaluation and optimization of innovative, mycoremediation technologies to remove pathogens and antibiotics from dairy manure. NIFA/USDA Award $469,999. With Dr. Kali Kniel (UD) and Dr. Dong Hee Kang (Morgan State University).  Graduate Student: Sivaranjani Palani, Civil and Environmental Engineering.

Colloid Mobilization and Biogeochemical Cycling of Organic Carbon, Nitrogen and Phosphorous in Wetlands. With Dr. Bruce Vasilas and Dr. Yan Jin.

Development of a Fungal Biocell Reactor for Treatment of a Food Processing Wastewater.

Evaluation of Soil Media and Outlet Controls for Advanced Bioretention Systems. With Dr. Carmine Balascio and Dr. William Lucas.

Chesapeake Bay Technology Assessment Protocol for Evaluating Stormwater Manufactured Treatment Devices, With Dr. Carmine Balascio, Lead PI

Past Projects:

Recent Publications

Generally, AEMC  will appear as second or last author if publication is a mentored student project. Google Scholar reported citations: 993, h-Index = 16, i10-Index = 22. Google Scholars Report Page

Chirnside, A.E.M. 2020. Current Trends and Regulations for Water Reuse in Irrigation. In  World Environmental and Water Resources Congress 2020: Water Resources Planning and Management and Irrigation and Drainage. S. Ahmad and R. Murray, Editors. Pp.42-46. ISBN (PDF): 9780784482957

McGay, P., P Tran, and A. E. M. Chirnside. 2020. Aging Infrastructure II: The ‘Unseen’ Resilience Challenges. EWRI Currents 22(3): 8-11.

Chirnside, A. E. and A. Kwart.  2017. Development of a Fungal Biocell Reactor for Treatment of a Food Processing Wastewater. In Emerging and Innovative Technologies, World Environmental and Water Resources Congress. pp. 417-426.

Chirnside, A. E.M., T. S. Kulkarni, M. Hart, S. V. Rose and R. Klinger. 2017. The 2014 Duke Energy Dan River Steam Station Coal Ash Spill – Eden, NC – Part IV. In EWRI Currents 19(1):4-10. EWRI Communications Council, EWRI of American Society of Civil Engineers.

Kang, D. H., M. Brady and Chirnside, A. E. M. 2017. Evaluation of Waste Concrete Road Materials for Use in Oyster Aquaculture-PHASE III. In Preparation

Chirnside, A. E. M., W. F. Ritter and M. Radosevich. 2017. Biodegradation of Aged Residues of Atrazine and Alachlor in a Mixed-Load Site Soil following pre-treatment with Fungal Enzymes. In preparation for Biotechnology and Bioengineering.

Chirnside, A. E. 2016. Effect of Spent Mushroom Compost Nutrient Levels on the Efficiency of a Fungal Bioreactor to Remove Escherichia Coli from Aqueous Manure Waste Streams. In World Environmental and Water Resources Congress 2016 (pp. 398-407).

 Kang, D. H., M. Bundy, and Chirnside, A. E. M. 2016.  Evaluation of Waste Concrete Road Materials for Use in Oyster Aquaculture-Phase III, Report to Mid-Atlantic Transportation Sustainability - University Transportation Center (MATS-UTC), Pp. 12.

Chirnside, A. E.M., T. S. Kulkarni, M. Hart, and R. Klinger. 2016. The 2014 Duke Energy Dan River Steam Station Coal Ash Spill – Eden, NC – Part III. In EWRI Currents 18(3):5-9. EWRI Communications Council, EWRI of American Society of Civil Engineers.

Türkmen, M., Walther, E. F., Andres, A. S., Chirnside, A. E. M., Ritter, W. F., 2015. Evaluation of Wastewater Treatment Options Used in Rapid Infiltration Basin Systems (RIBS): Delaware Geological Survey Bulletin 1A, 22 pp.

Andres, A. S., Walther, E., Türkmen, M., He, C., Chirnside, A. E. M., Ritter, W., 2015. Groundwater Quality and Monitoring of Rapid Infiltration Basin Systems (RIBS), Theory and Field Experiments at Cape Henlopen State Park, Delaware: Delaware Geological Survey Bulletin 21C, 51 pp.

Shea, M., S. Litvin, and A. Chirnside. 2013. The effect of nitrogen, sulfur, and phosphorus compounds on bioremediation of oil spills by Pseudomonas fluorescein and Bacillus subtilis. Journal of Experimental Secondary Science. 30-37

Chirnside, A. E. M., and S. Hahn. 2013. “The use of recycled water for irrigation of turf and landscape plants: A comparison of the current state regulations for water reuse.” In Using 21st Century Technology to Better Manage Irrigation Water Supplies. Seventh International Conference on Irrigation and Drainage. B. T. Wahlin and S. S. Anderson, Eds. U.S. Committee on Irrigation and Drainage. Denver, CO. Pp.249-258.

Vasilas, B., M. Rabenhorst, J. Fuhrmann, A. E. M. Chirnside, and S. Inamdar.  2013. “Wetland Biogeochemistry Techniques”. In Wetland Techniques. J. T. Anderson and C. A. Davis (Eds.), Springer Publishers, Inc., NY. Pp. 355-442. ISBN: 978-94-007-6859-8.

Chirnside, A. E. M. 2011. “Bioremediation of Herbicide Contaminated Soil”. In Herbicides: Properties, Crop Protection and Environmental Hazards. K. D. Piotrowski, Ed. Nova Science Publishers, Inc., NY. Pp. 1-66. ISBN: 978-1-61209-301-7.

Vasilas, B., J. Bowman, A. Rogerson, A. E. M. Chirnside, and W. F. Ritter. 2011. Impact of piers on tidal marshes: accumulation of wood preservative metals in water and soils. J. Environmental Science and Engineering. 5(3):260-270.