Orca necropsy shows fetus died first: report – Times Colonist

It appears that the fetus died first and may have caused the death of the mother. Still no firm understanding if the fetus was impacted by environmental issues, or whether it was a natural death.


Vancouver places 30,000 sandbags along waterfront as ‘king tide’ looms – Canadian Press

Vancouver braces for high tide coupled with storm surge. This is exactly the issue that climate change scientists warn about becoming more frequent as the climate continues to warm. It’s not so much about the mid points of the swings, but that we will continue to have higher highs and lower lows.  I have not heard of any precautions being taken on the Washington side of the Strait.

Some 30,000 sandbags line a stretch of low-lying waterfront land in Vancouver, placed by city workers in a bid to protect local homes from an anticipated king tide. The task was completed by about 45 workers in advance of Wednesday’s forecasted weather event, which could coincide with the same type of high winds and heavy rains that have already cut power to thousands of residents across the south coast and flooded streets. Justin Smallbridge reports. (Canadian Press)


Forage Fish Matter – Video

Forage fish are the backbone of a healthy Puget Sound. They provide the food base for endangered chinook which in turn are relied on by the endangered Southern Resident Orcas. Little Fish + Big Fish = Orca. Laura James produced this piece for Sound Action.

Forage Fish Matter http://vimeo.com/113797219

Another Orca Death in the Salish Sea. JPod down to 77

We have lost a number of Southern Resident orcas in the last year. The hard thing to take is that J-32 was a young breeding mother, and died with a fetus inside her. First thoughts has been that the calf died in utero and may have been what killed the mother. With the population so low, the loss of even one young cow is truly painful. We have to admit that the recovery efforts are failing, for reasons we still don’t fully understand, but have some strong suspicions. Among them are pollution, fish and herring stocks, and an inability to recover from the theft of their young and the murder of their old from the pods in the 1960s and 70s, as documented in “Black Fish”.


Canadian marine mammal scientists who spent most of Saturday performing a necropsy on killer whale J-32 say the female orca had been pregnant with a full-term fetus.

We don’t have much time to get this trend reversed. And Canada is not helping by allowing destruction of the habitat in the Mt. Polley Mine Spill to dump hundreds of tons of mercury into the Frasier River system with no cleanup. This will directly affect their food source, by poisoning the Frasier River salmon that spawn in and above the lake.

Leaked Internal Presentation Details the Oil Industry’s Campaign to Stop Clean Energy – Renewable Energy World

More bad business practices by the petroleum industry. WSPA operates up here in Washington, and is often lobbying our State legislators to stop progressive clean energy proposals. I’ve passed them in Olympia going to our representatives in the halls.

The Western States Petroleum Association (WSPA) — whose members include Chevron, ExxonMobil, Shell, ConocoPhillips, BP, and others — was caught red-handed late last month when a leaked internal presentation revealed a coordinated campaign to stomp out climate and clean energy progress in California, Oregon and Washington by propping up over 15 front groups that purport to represent the views of concerned citizens and the broader business community.

read the rest of the story at:


Marine Resources Committees Annual Meeting in Port Townsend

The annual meeting of Marine Resource Committees (MRC) that help guide policy and restoration work in the seven north Sound counties took place this weekend in Port Townsend. The MRCs are funded and supported by the Northwest Strait Commission. The annual meeting is always a full house packed with great speakers on the latest scientific and policy issues around restoration of the Salish Sea.

Speakers included President Obama’s Director  of the National Ocean Council, Beth Kerttula who gave a spirited talk on working under the Obama Administration to set ocean policy. Also the Executive Director of the Puget Sound Partnership, Sheida Sahandy spoke on the direction of the PSP under her leadership up to now (Ms. Sahandy took over the PSP earller in the in year). Ms Sahandy braved a serious cold to give the audience what may be one of the better ways of moving the Partnership forward in some time. Julie Horowitz from the Office of the Governor Shellfish Initiative spoke on the latest coordination efforts in shellfish science at the State level. Ian Miller spoke on climate change and the impacts of it on coastal Washington communities, which includes problems ahead for Port Townsend, which will be negatively impacted by climate change. Jamestown S’Klallam tribal elder Marlon Holden who is also the chair of the Natural Resources Committee for the tribe gave us his blessing, as well as an overview of the tribal point of view on environmental protection, to kick off the proceedings. Look for links to the audio of the speakers at the web site of the NW Straits Commission, http://www.nwstraits.org/

MRC speakers (Clockwise from top): Jamestown S'Klallam Tribal member Marlin Holden, Sheida Sahandy, Beth Kerttula,,Betsy Peobody,Ginny Broadhurst,Ian Miller,Julie Horowitz, Christine Woodward

MRC speakers (Clockwise from top): Jamestown S’Klallam Tribal member Marlin Holden, Sheida Sahandy, Beth Kerttula,,Betsy Peobody,Ginny Broadhurst,Ian Miller,Julie Horowitz, Christine Woodward

In the morning, the Jefferson County MRC had a tour of local restoration sites, on the Glacier Express.

MRC Conference Boat Tour

Additional speakers also included Betsy Peabody, Puget Sound Restoration Fund, who spoke on a multi-faceted Approach to Combating Ocean Acidification;Tom Mumford, Ret. Dept of Natural Resources on  kelp research; Ron Thom, Pacific Northwest of the National Laboratory on eelgrass research: restoring Puget Sound’s meadows. From Jefferson County,Cheryl Lowe of the Jefferson MRC presented on: Local Action: MRCs and Eelgrass Protection Efforts .

MRC Conf 4

Ron Thom, Tom Mumford,Cheryl Lowe, Nan McKay, Jerry Masters, and Jill Clark presenting award to Joe Chang of F/V Bet Sea.


Another showing of “Return of the River” in PT this weekend!

GO SEE IT. A beautiful, moving  film on the Elwha Dam removal. John and Jessica have done a masterful job. I’ve done a much longer review in this blog previously, so search for it if you need more input. But really, just go see it!



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