Animals Articles

Image of CoastWatch iNaturalist Challenge banner over photo of sea anemones.

CoastWatch Fall Challenge

cwc_banner.png CoastWatch is inaugurating a new, special project this autumn, the CoastWatch Fall iNaturalist Challenge, which will take place Sept. 23-Oct. 3. (Note--this event has been extended by one day, through 11:50 p.m. Oct. 3.) The ten-day challenge, which anyone (not just CoastWatchers) can join, is in effect a coastwide bioblitz, during which...Read more
Sea otters in the Gulf of Alaska, where populations have been restored. /photo by Kedar Gadge, Unspl

Sea Otter Study Points to Reintroduction Feasibility

otters_alaska_kedar_gadge_unsplash.jpg On July 27, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) released a report to Congress supporting the feasibility of reintroducing sea otters to their historic range on the Pacific coast, including Oregon, Washington, and...Read more
Volunteers conducting sea star observations.

Citizen Scientists Help Track Sea Star Populations

sea_star_survey_jessica_waddell_karen_heere_by_custer.jpg Sea stars are keystone species in intertidal ecosystems. Through their predation, they structure rocky shoreline habitats. Monitoring the status of sea star populations is therefore important in understanding the health of intertidal communities—and all the more...Read more
Photo of Western Snowy Plover with chick by Mick Thompson.

CoastWatchers Monitor Snowy Plover Nesting Sites

snowy_plover_sign_oprd_16x9.jpg Nesting season has begun for the threatened Western Snowy Plover, the only resident shorebird that nests on the Oregon coast. Signs are going up, warning beachgoers about the presence of plovers. CoastWatchers can help by carefully observing restrictions on beach use to protect the nesting birds, and by noting and...Read more

Comment on Whale Entanglement

img_9908-grey-whale-depoe-bay-rena-olson.jpg Whale entanglement in fishing gear is a global problem. It is a problem off the U.S. West Coast, including Oregon. Fishery gear entanglement is a direct human cause of harm and mortality to cetaceans. Oregon Dungeness crab fishing gear has been found to be a major source of...Read more

Oregon Shores Joins Defense of Endangered Species Act

snowy_plover_south_beach_molly_sultany.jpeg Oregon Shores joined 45 other ocean conservation groups recently in protesting an attempt by the Trump administration to cripple the Endangered Species Act, with new definitions of “habitat” which would severely limited the law’s effectiveness. To see our joint comment,...Read more

BioBlitzes in a New Format Coming up in July

bioblitz_roads_end_fawn_custer_demonstrating_doug_cody.jpeg A BioBlitz is an intensive survey of a defined area with the goal of identifying all the species to be found in that area at one time, generally involving members of the public assisted by experts. It is a snapshot of biodiversity. In past years, coastal...Read more

Orca Awareness Month Declared in Oregon

orca_event_kickoff.png For 13 years, June has been proclaimed Orca Awareness Month by the Governor of Washington — and for the first time in 2016, Orca Awareness Month was celebrated in Oregon and in British Columbia as well! The American Cetacean Society’s Oregon Chapter kicked things off early with an Orca Awareness Day at the Hatfield Marine Science...Read more
Snowy Plover chicks.\Photo by Adam Kotaich.

Snowy Plover Nesting Period Ends

snowy_plover_chicks_adam_kotaich.jpg Beachgoers assist the ongoing effort to restore healthy populations of the threatened Western Snowy Plover to Oregon’s beaches by respecting nesting areas and beach restrictions during nesting season, March 15 through Sept. 15. Signs and ropes that identify sensitive western snowy plover nesting areas have...Read more
Snowy Plover exclusion area.  Photo courtesy of U.S. Forest Service.

Snowy Plover Restrictions Still in Effect

snowy_plover_exclosure_courtesy_usfs.jpg Beachgoers are urged to help recovery efforts of the threatened Western Snowy Plover by respecting nesting areas and beach restrictions. These regulations went into effect for the year on March 15, and while most of the nesting season is over, the regulations remain in force through Sept. 15. It is...Read more