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Mile 195 — Lincoln County, South San Marine Beach, Starr Creek 
WetWabbit — Time and tide finally aligned for this walk. It was a mostly sunny day--welcome respite from recent showers. No unusual human or marine activity was detected. There were a few velella velella.   COMPLETE REPORT  
 Sat Apr 25, 12:47 PM   Didn't taste good
 Online Registration Starts for Summer Shoreline Workshops
Students sampling at shoreline science workshop. Photo by Michael Coe.
Registration is now underway for CoastWatch’s 2015 Shoreline Science Workshops. These three-day, intensive encounters with coastal natural history and science are the best opportunity we offer each year to gain a great deal of information about the coastal environment in one concentrated dose. While the workshops are designed to be particularly helpful to volunteers (or prospective volunteers) in our CoastWatch program, all comers are welcome, and the experience will be valuable to anyone who cares about the natural world of the coast.
To register and get more information, go here.
As in past years, these workshops will be led by ecologist Stewart Schultz, author of The Northwest Coast: A Natural History, along with our own CoastWatch volunteer coordinator, Fawn Custer, herself a highly experienced marine educator. You’ll learn about tidepools, beaches and dunes, estuaries and coastal forests, and offshore ecosystems. The workshops consist of a mix of lectures, field trips and laboratory experiences.
The workshops this year will have a special emphasis on our new marine reserves, and on the various citizen science projects through which CoastWatchers (and other community members) can help to monitor them. Here’s the schedule:
*July 18-20
Arch Cape Fire Hall
72979 U.S. 101, Arch Cape
*August 1-3
Depoe Bay Community Hall
220 SE Bay Street, Depoe Bay
*August 14-16
Port Orford Sea Grant meeting room
444 Jackson Street, Port Orford
For more information, contact Fawn Custer, (541) 270-0027,

 Request Goes Out to Watch for Non-Native Algae
Saccharina japonica.
The derelict vessel found floating off Oregon’s coast, which was the subject of an earlier alert, has been towed to Newport and examined by scientists. Few animal species were found clinging to the vessel, but it was festooned with algae. Since these were species from the western Pacific, it is clear that the unidentified vessel comes from Asia, and is probably debris from the 2011 Japanese tsunami.
CoastWatcher Gayle Hansen, who also happens to be a leading expert in marine algae (what most of us call seaweed), is in the midst of studying the algae collected from the vessel. She writes:
“My preliminary assessment of the species is that they are typical of Japanese Tsunami Marine Debris (JTMD) algal species. I need to work on the identifications further, but the two dominant larger algae are Petalonia fascia (common on most all JTMD debris) and Chondrus giganteus (found before only on the boat that washed up at Benson Beach on June 15, 2012). The latter species does not occur naturally on our coast (it is known only from Japan, Korea, and France), and it and shows that the boat is conclusively JTMD or at least from Asia since the species does not occur on this coast. I will send this and the other uncommon species from the boat to Japan for DNA confirmation next week. Both of these species were fertile and actively dropping spores.”
Gayle issued the following request to those monitoring for marine debris and willing to collect specimens from suspected tsunami debris:
“I would like to make a request to those of you collecting on debris. Petalonia (http:// is a brown blade that reaches a maximum of 12" or so in length. It is common on both of our coasts. The blade is narrow and often lanceolate (sword-shaped) and the holdfast is a small disc - there is no stipe or stem. This species is often confused with kelps that do have a stipe (stem) easy to tell from the blade. Please, if you collect Petalonia, be sure to look to see if stipes are present on any of the material. If they are present, please deliver the samples to me for identification. We may have Saccharina japonica coming in. This kelp was found on the Agate Beach dock (June 5, 2012) and on the Long Beach fish boat (March 22, 2013). If this latter species does recruit to our shore, it may be a serious threat to our native kelp species.
Dr. Gayle I. Hansen
Marine Algal Taxonomist
Oregon State University, HMSC-EPA
2111 SE Marine Science Drive
Newport, Oregon 97365-5260 USA
Phone: 541-867-5012 (lab), 541-265-4061 (home)
Fax: 541-867-4049 (attention G. Hansen) Lab E-mail:

 County Fee Could Limit Access to Douglas County Shoreline
Oregon Shores has always strongly advocated for free access to the public shoreline. While there are valid reasons for charging fees for camping and other services, simple access to nature should be open to all. When Sam Boardman created Oregon’s state park system beginning in 1929, he concentrated on establishing a network of coastal parks and pull-outs for the precise purpose of providing ... MORE 
 Keep Watch for Transponders While Monitoring the Shore
Most CoastWatchers and other beachcombers are highly aware of the debris generated by the Japanese tsunami of 2011 that has been reaching our shores. But here is an alert concerning “debris” that was tossed into the sea deliberately. CoastWatchers and others who walk the beach and observe it carefully may be able to help. After the tsunami took place, scientists released instruments known as ... MORE 
 CoastWatch Citizen Science Projects Need More Volunteers
CoastWatch has long sponsored several citizen science projects, such as the beached bird survey in which many mile adopters participate. Over the course of the past year, though, we have expanded the range of these projects. We now conduct seven citizen science projects. Through our "Community Engagement with Marine Reserves" project, we are developing a special project to focus citizen science ... MORE 
 Come to Pacific City for Birding and Blues
Two Rivers peninsula on Nestucca Bay National Wildlife Refuge. Photo by Bergman Photography.
On the weekend of May 1-3, The Birding and Blues Festival returns to southern Tillamook County, featuring a wide range of family-friendly activities. The weekend features everything from guided nature walks and kayak trips to workshops to blues concerts.
The festival will offer an inaugural walk at the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s newly acquired Two Rivers Peninsula at the Nestucca Bay National Wildlife Refuge. This 200-acre tract occupies the confluence of the Nestucca and Little Nestucca rivers. It comprises a wide range of habitats and includes almost three miles of trails.
Dr. Susan Haig, a professor of wildlife ecology at Oregon State University, will discuss her new book, “California Condors in the Pacific Northwest.”
Headquarters is the Kiawanda Community Center, 34600 Cape Kiwanda Dr. in Pacific City. For more information, go to, or contact Dawn Harris of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, (541) 867-4550,

 Volunteers Needed to Transport Distressed Wildlife
CoastWatch has received the following request for help from the Wildlife Center of the North Coast. We can testify that they do excellent work: “Wildlife Center of the North Coast needs volunteers to help transport distressed wildlife part way to Astoria from the Newport, Lincoln City or Pacific City regions. The Wildlife Center is a volunteer based private non-profit organization located near ... MORE 
  Snowy Plover Nesting Season Begins, with an Addition
Nesting season for Western snowy plovers, a federally threatened shorebird that nests on the sandy shore, is underway on Oregon beaches. Beachgoers are asked to follow nesting season restrictions, which continue through September 15 on certain Oregon beaches to protect snowy plover eggs and young. CoastWatchers can help by paying special attention to the plover exclusion zones and keeping an eye ... MORE 
 Marine Debris Volunteers Needed for Long-Term Monitoring
The upsurge of marine debris we saw this winter on Oregon’s shoreline, some of it from the Japanese tsunami and bearing potentially invasive organisms, is a reminder of the continued importance of monitoring for marine debris and cleaning it up. CoastWatchers turned out for a number of special rapid response efforts to clean up debris that arrived in large quantities, which successfully rounded ... MORE 
 Watch for By-the-wind Sailors Stranded on Our Shores
Every avid Oregon beachcomber is familiar with Velella velella, or by-the-wind sailors: little (typically 4 to 6 cm.) violet-blue floating creatures that are often stranded by the hundreds or thousands on the beach April through July. This year, as many beachgoers have noted, they have stranded by the hundreds of thousands--but this is still part of the natural cycle. They live in vast ... MORE 
  MILE 297  NehalemBay — The beach is very flat, extending quite far out to the surf line. The wood is mostly covered, although a few large logs have been washed in recently. If these drift north, those who are going to ...  MORE 
  MILE 195  WetWabbit — Time and tide finally aligned for this walk. It was a mostly sunny day--welcome respite from recent showers. No unusual human or marine activity was detected. There were a few velella velella.  MORE 
  MILE 255  bballentine — Very quiet day, only one person on beach other than us. Gulls, crows, and sanderlings seen. Some very large drifts of Velella velella in several areas, smaller numbers scattered along whole mile. ...  MORE 
  MILE 190  LyndaC — Astounding number of seastars, 52! where previously none seen. Appeared plump and healthy, in clusters and singly. Plastic pieces in wrack line >1/2", larger than usual. Vela Vela, clumps of ...  MORE 
  MILE 23  Bob Harvey DISPATCH  — I inspected my Mile 23 at low tide on Tuesday the 21st. I have never been there when the tide was so low , about negative 1.3. The first thing I learned is that the marine gardens there are far ...  MORE 
  MILE 102  beachnut — An exciting morning on the southern stretch was marked by a baby seal on the beach crying for mother. (Went back later to find baby gone and mother's trail to the sea.) Spotted my first turkey ...  MORE 
  MILE 213  Paul/Julia — The beach was essentially clean but driftline area was full of dead Velella velella and logs. 4 logs had goose barnacles on them. More human activity this time with surfriders and riding horses.  MORE 
  MILE 103  beachnut — A lovely sunny morning with low wind and a minus 1.3-foot tide. Two dog walkers; 3 vehicles on the access road pullouts. Sanderlings were gobbling Velella velella laying in drifts along the high ...  MORE 
  MILE 306  Frankie — Clam tide, though surf was rough so few clams were gotten.  MORE 
  MILE 239  ORbeach — Beautiful but breezy day. The beach was covered with millions of Velella velella ("by-the-wind sailors") jellyfish decomposing in the sun. Very little debris but a couple possible tsunami items.  MORE 
  MILE 205  Fawn and Mike DISPATCH  — Plenty of new debris on the beach this morning. Large black buoy too large to move, a crate and other smaller buoys with organisms. Taken to HMSC. Interest in the buoy with the limpet.  MORE 
  MILE 306  Frankie DISPATCH  — Observed an adult, breeding plumage Brown Pelican standing on the rocks early this AM. After several hrs, called Wildlife Center of the North Coast. Joshua & Bradley arrived from Astoria early PM. ...  MORE 
  MILE 245  LWelcher DISPATCH  — Literally over a million By-the-Wind Sailors here today, but to my horror there are also 4 dead pelicans and several dead and eaten gulls.  MORE 
  MILE 222  dderickson — The most outstanding features of this survey were the large amounts of washed-up By-the-wind sailors (Velella velella) in all the drift lines between the water's edge and the bluff, and the large ...  MORE 
  MILE 245  TerryH DISPATCH  — Noted 6 dead pelicans, which is unusual for this beach. Also, the velella stranding has gotten much larger, 3 inches deep in places.  MORE 
  MILE 306  Frankie — Apparent tsumani debris  MORE 
  MILE 10  SMathis — Nice day to do a survey. Of note was a marked absence of sea stars. Not normal.  MORE 
  MILE 106  amyfra — Very little debris of any kind on the beach. A young sea lion(1 yr. oldish) lying on beach at surf. Appeared a bit thin and lethargic. At 145 post north of Bullards Beach parking area. Will check ...  MORE 
  MILE 306  Frankie — Velella velella all over  MORE 
  MILE 292  Mershlo DISPATCH  — A couple of hours before high tide, between Saltair Creek and the Rockaway wayside. Clear sunny day. Millions of Velella velella. Also a lot of things on the beach that had been out at sea for quite ...  MORE 
CoastWatch, a citizen monitoring program, engages Oregonians in personal stewardship over their shoreline. Volunteers adopt mile-long segments of Oregon's coast, keeping watch for natural changes and human-induced impacts, reporting on their observations, and sounding the alarm about threats and concerns.

CoastWatch is founded on individual vigilance and responsibility for one portion of the ocean shore. But the program also links hundreds of 'mile adopters' in a coastwide network of concerned citizens taking action to conserve shoreline resources. CoastWatchers serve as an early warning system not only for the Oregon Shores Conservation Coalition, but also for neighbors along their miles, local government, regulatory agencies and other conservation groups.