Marine Debris Monitoring Survey
A monthly marine debris survey is conducted at Cape Cove, just south of Cape Perpetua. To participate, meet at Cape Perpetua Visitor Center (2400 Hwy 101, about three miles south of Yachats) in the parking lot at noon on Saturday, May 11, to start the survey—the group will walk down to the beach from there. Sturdy shoes are recommended, as there is a steep path to the beach. Equipment and instruction will be provided. The survey will take about two hours.
CoastWatch, which leads coastwide marine debris monitoring for the Oregon coast using a national protocol from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) as part of the state’s Marine Debris Action Plan, is collaborating with the Cape Perpetua Marine Reserve Collaborative at this site. The data goes into a national database kept by NOAA.
The team will survey 100 yards of Cape Cove Beach. This includes flat sandy beach, wood debris, cobble rocks and lava rock. Most of the debris is located in the rocky and woody areas. After the survey, participants will collect their finds, sort and document. The plastic items are kept for re-use in various projects.
Volunteers are always needed, and visitors are also welcome to join in to learn about the marine debris monitoring process, perhaps to carry the knowledge to another area to start up a new monitoring team.
These surveys are citizen science efforts that make a contribution to scientific studies of the origins and impacts of such debris by helping to provide baseline data. They also help to clean up the stretches of shoreline where they occur.
For more information about marine debris monitoring, contact Fawn Custer, CoastWatch volunteer coordinator, at (541) 270-0027, [email protected].