Monitor and Observe Coastal Animals

Observe Beached Birds

The beached bird survey, developed by COASST (Coastal Observation and Seabird Survey Team, based at the University of Washington), involves monthly surveys using a formal protocol. COASST staff trains volunteers online and through training sessions in Oregon.

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Complete Sea Star Observations

The Oregon Kelp Alliance (ORKA) and (the Multi-Agency Rocky Intertidal Network) MARINe encourage volunteers to submit observations of all species of healthy and sick sea stars in intertidal and subtidal environments. Get wet!

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Report Stranded Marine Mammals

CoastWatchers and other observers report marine mammal strandings to the Oregon Marine Mammal Stranding Network year-round. Anyone observing a stranded animal, alive or dead, anywhere on the coast can assist by submitting an online report.

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Document Killer Whale Sightings

Contribute to new research about killer whales that frequent Oregon’s waters. Submit your sightings and photos to the Oregon Coast Killer Whale Monitoring Program.

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Water and Plastic

Track Our Impact on Coastal Ecosystems

Conduct Marine Debris Surveys

CoastWatch volunteers can choose one of two ways to monitor and map marine debris on their mile. Both NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration) and the University of Washington offer protocol training sessions blending online, classroom, and in-the-field education.

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Marine debris collected during an MDMAP survey.

Water Quality

The Blue Water Task Force works all along the Oregon Coast, collecting and processing beach water samples to look for enterococcus, a bacteria indicating levels of ecoli. BWTF is a program of the Surfrider Foundation, and eight chapters collect and process water from 44 sites on the Oregon coast. 

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Landscape and Habitat

Document Changes in Coastal Landscapes

Monitor King Tides to Track Sea Level Rise

Volunteers for the Oregon King Tides Project photograph King Tides to demonstrate current coastal flooding vulnerabilities and anticipate what will become ordinary tide levels as our climate changes. CoastWatch and the Oregon Coastal Management Program provide outreach and training in fall and winter.


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Survey Dunes for Hybrid Beachgrass

The hybrid beachgrass survey is a collaboration with scientists at Oregon State University. In the spring, summer, or fall volunteers use iNaturalist to help track the spread of a newly discovered beachgrass, a hybrid of the two invasive species of beachgrass that dominate Oregon’s coastal foredunes.

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Explore answers to common questions about our Co-Science program. If you have more questions or concerns, please contact us.

Help us create a healthy and resilient Oregon coast where nature and all people thrive together.



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