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Mile 203 Report
June 19, 2022
At 10:02 p.
At 10:02 p.m. last night, someone on Bayshore Beach, two houses west of me, began shooting off fireworks, loud sky rocket types with big bang star bursts at the top. I jumped out of bed, our dog ran under the bed, and probably at least a couple of PTSD vets in the neighborhood hit the floor. As we all know, beach fireworks are prohibited. To remind visitors, there are Fireworks Prohibited signs and beach access signs along Oceania Drive paralleling the beach (see attached photos and also a highlighted version of Oregon Administrative Rule (OAR) 736-021-0100 cited on the Fireworks Prohibited signs).This morning I walked the beach looking for fireworks debris but didn't find any, so I knocked on the door of the house fronting where the fireworks had originated, a vacation house whose owners I didn't know. The people who answered the door, one of them a young woman holding a baby, had also been disturbed by the fireworks, which they said came from the beach right in front of them, but they didn't know who it was, and it hadn't been them. I know I'm just preaching to the choir, but if anyone would like to pass this on, I'm attaching a #SilentFireworks poster which Mile 203's Nancy Thomas sent to me.
Temperature: 62 F. Cloud Cover: Cloudy. Tide Level: 0.0 feet.
Apparent violations: Fireworks on beach.
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All Mile 203 Reports
The beach has had substantial washing away of old dunes and washing up of beach grass into the dunes. There were 45 bird carcasses of we believe are Cassin's auklets.
Today I and my two CoastWatch partners conducted a NOAA Marine Debris survey on our 100 meter survey site at Sandpiper Beach, Mile 203. On reaching our marine debris survey site, we saw a lot of Cassin's Auklet carcasses, which COASST calls CAAU, all high up on the beach among the beach vegetation and washed-in sea grass, many carcasses partially covered by sand or vegetation. After we completed our debris survey, I returned to our survey site and began collecting CAAU carcasses in groups of 9, as COASST recommends, ultimately collecting 40 carcasses in 4 full and 1 partial grouping. Below is a link to our Sandpiper Beach NOAA debris survey site where most CAAUs were found, reached by a boardwalk that enters the beach midway in the debris survey site. COASST defines a "wreck" as more than 20 beached individuals of one species per kilometer, and a "MME" (Massive Mortality Event) as a spike of up to hundreds of carcasses per kilometer. We also found a beached Northern Fulmar and what is I believe was either a female Gadwall or White-winged Scoter, which I took note of but didn't measure or report on to COASST. I submitted documentation with photos of the CAAU beaching event to COASST, and COASST responded that they had received reports of CAAU beachings from Southern Oregon sites like Coquille Point and Cape Blanco but also as far north as Manzanita. All this sounds very dry, but it was really sad to see and handle all these beautiful little dead birds and wonder if this is completely natural or if climate change, and perhaps a decline of prey species making these birds more vulnerable, factors into these mortality events. https://mdmap.
The storms and rain caused some beach washout from the ocean and from the land.
Last year at this time, Jesse Jones helped us set up a 100 meter NOAA marine debris survey site on Mile 204, which we later moved to Sandpiper Beach on Mile 203.
After observing 8 snowy plovers on Mile 200 yesterday, I wanted to check up on the plovers on Mile 203.