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A splendid autumn morning near low tide. We immediately noted that sections of the surf inner zone were a deep chocolate brown, and on closer inspection saw the surface of the discolored water was covered with large bubbles. A diatom bloom! The strand in the intertidal zone was likewise coated with algae. Curiously, the bloom appeared patchy along the beach, with the algae concentrated in 100-300 m sections interspaced by seemingly algae-free areas (judging by color of the breakers). I’ve learned from ODFW that it was a bloom of Asterionellopsis sociallis, non-toxic and good clam food. The debris in the strand line was relatively litter-free save for a few plastic bottles. It was composed of large wood, Nereocystis stipes, and a lot of eelgrass (Zostera marina). It was odd to see so much estuarine eelgrass on the beach as the Columbia estuary is not thought to highly productive. Likely exported from Willapa or elsewhere. We came across six recently killed common murres, four of which had had their breast meat consumed. A pair of ravens we spied may have been doing the scavenging. Flying overhead were ~15 geese and a few gulls.

Conditions

Temperature: 70 F. Cloud Cover: Sunny. Wind Velocity: Calm/Light.

Human Activities

Wood cutting within a tide.

Concerns

Driftwood removal

Notable Wildlife

A pair of Ravens

Beached Birds

Total dead birds: 8. 7 murres, 6 recently dead and being scavenged. The other was skeletal. 1 puffin? very decayed.

Driftline Content

Seaweeds and seagrass, Wood pieces. eelgrass

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All Mile 334 Reports

Showing 8 of 12 reports

Mile 334

February 21, 2019

Another bright clear day on the northern Oregon coast.

Merce and Michael

Mile 334

November 7, 2018

We found a flock of 1,150-1,300 Dunlin.

Merce and Michael

Mile 334

August 6, 2018

One dead adult Ochre Sea Star was found, with no evidence of wasting.

Merce and Michael

decorative elemnt for a coastwatch report.

Mile 334

October 5, 2012

Beautiful autumn day with a warm east wind.

croegner

Mile 334

November 25, 2011

Took a late afternoon hike on mile from 335 to 334.

croegner

Mile 334

January 22, 2011

A pleasant but relatively unremarkable walk.

croegner

Mile 334

October 11, 2010

A splendid autumn morning near low tide.

croegner

Mile 334

February 7, 2010

A sunny and mild neap tide, near low water.

croegner