Olympic National Park Officials Plan More Mountain Goat Roundups – PDN

The first round of goat wrangling in Olympic National Park has come to an end and 98 goats have been moved to the North Cascades. Monday marked the conclusion of the two-week capture and translocation process that moved 98 mountain goats from Olympic National Park to the North Cascades — including 11 kids that were released with their nannies — and removed 115 mountain goats from the park. Jesse Major reports. (Peninsula Daily News)

Read the whole story here:

https://www.peninsuladailynews.com/news/olympic-national-park-officials-plan-more-mountain-goat-roundups/

COHO SALMON FOUND IN LAKE SUTHERLAND – NW Treaty Tribes

The good news keeps coming. Wild coho have found mixing with fix that had been moved into and out of the hatchery during the dam removal.

During the tribe’s annual monitoring of Indian Creek, which connects Lake Sutherland to the Elwha River, the tribe found smolts up to 10 inches long in the tribe’s fyke net. Coho smolts are typically half that size.

Read the rest of the story here:

https://nwtreatytribes.org/coho-salmon-found-in-lake-sutherland/

Abandoned Chacaltaya Ski Resort – Atlas Obscura

The world’s highest ski resort was deserted after an 18,000-year-old glacier melted away.  

Are we next? Though there is a lot of distance between there and here, it’s happening here as well. There was only a years between a thriving glacier and it’s ski industry and this. Also keep in mind that glaciers like this one provide our water. There’s no mention if La Paz lost some of it’s source of water, as this was only 10 miles away.

Lose the glaciers, lose our main source of water along with fish habitat. Time is running out. Demand our politicians, even local ones, take the issue of finding alternative sources of water for towns like Port Townsend and Port Angeles. I know many of you readers value your restoration work, but without water, it is for nothing.

https://www.atlasobscura.com/places/abandoned-chacaltaya-ski-resort

Willapa Bay Oyster Farmers Struggle As Shrimp Population Booms – NWPB

As if to underscore my concerns about not having the voice of critics of the shellfish industry at the upcoming “Aquaculture Education Day” being put on by the Jefferson Marine Resources Committee, here’s a new story on the Willapa Bay fiasco.  Wonder if anyone would be interested in hearing some about this issue at the education forum?

The shrimp are actually native to the bay, unlike the oysters which were brought in to farm from Japan after settlers overharvested the native Pacific Northwest oyster to near extinction.

Many farmers believe the influx of shrimp was likely human-caused. Wilson points to a decrease in predators after decades of overfishing sturgeon and salmon and the dams along the Columbia River, which ended freshwater floods that killed off shrimp in the bay. (emphasis mine)

Read the whole story here:

https://www.nwpb.org/2019/06/18/willapa-bay-oyster-farmers-struggle-as-shrimp-population-booms/

Event: Shellfish Aquaculture Educational Forum – Port Townsend

The Jefferson County Marine Resources Committee will be holding an educational forum on shellfish aquaculture on June 28th. Don’t expect any mention of the controversy over geoduck aquaculture in Jefferson County, unless of course, you come prepared to bring it up. They have decided that it’s too controversial to add to the agenda. However, they might need reminding  that the front page of their web site does say their mission is:

Our mission is to protect and restore the marine environments of East Jefferson County by raising community awareness of issues and generating support for Northwest Straits Commission (NWSC) programs and activities.

One has to wonder what protect means to them.

I have been told that Amy Carey is not going to be speaking. She has withdrawn. Correction: Though Amy told me she was canceling two days ago, she apparently has changed her mind as of today. Also, even though they claim there is representation from, “environmental groups” that is not true. There are no such groups on the agenda to discuss the issues of conversion of tidelands to monoculture geoduck farms nor the lawsuits that have been filed against one of the MRC member’s company.  I think that if you wish to bring your concerns about geoduck aquaculture, you should do so. No one will stand up and fight for your point of view at this “educational day” other than you, the reader. Since space is limited if you plan on attending you should let them know. Info on signup is listed below.

I need to also state that I was once the environmental representative to this MRC, but have resigned over the agenda to this educational day. I feel it is not representative of the spirit nor the mission of this organization.

The questions needing to be raised, that won’t be, can be summed up by a recent Sea Grant study, which found that:

This study, one of several funded by the state Legislature and overseen by Washington Sea Grant, found that more than doubling geoduck farming efforts in central Puget Sound could negatively impact salmon, eagles and great blue herons. Small crustaceans and moon snails might also decrease. Surf perch and small crabs fared better in this scenario, probably because they can find refuge and benefit from added farming structures like plastic piping.

Resilience of Soft-Sediment Communities after Geoduck Harvest in Samish Bay, Washington

“The study also found that under one scenario, geoduck farming in the main basin of Puget Sound could more than double before the ecosystem would feel significant impacts.”

The question needing to asked of Puget Sound shoreline landowners and others interested in the protection of salmon, eagles, and their ecosystems, which has not been debated, is “while the carrying capacity of this system might be that great, should we be accepting that as the outcome?”  It’s not whether it can support that much, but should we be doing that much? Who gets to decide? the industry or the people impacted?

If you want to get a quick overview of some shoreline homeowners in the South Sound that have been involved in trying to stop geoduck aquaculture from destroying their small bay, this web site will give you a small sample of what should have been given 10 minutes in a four hour agenda on the aquaculture industry. It’s a good quick read.

http://protectzanglecove.org/index.html

and for a more comprehensive story:

https://protectourshoreline.org/i_geoduckfarming.html

also this is a 2007 map by DNR outlining new aquaculture sites in Jefferson and Mason Counties. This is by no means exhaustive and obviously out of date. I’ve not seen a newer one yet.

https://protectourshoreline.org/DNR/DNR_LeaseMaps_Geoducks_2007.pdf

 


PRESS RELEASE — June 6, 2019

Event: Shellfish Aquaculture Educational Forum

Date: June 28, 1-5 pm

Location: Northwest Maritime Center, 431 Water St, Port Townsend

Contact:

Cheryl Lowe, Coordinator

Jefferson County Marine Resources Committee Cheryl.lowe@wsu.edu

360-379-5610 x 230

The Jefferson County Marine Resources Committee (MRC) is hosting a Shellfish Aquaculture Educational Forum on Friday, June 28th at 1 pm at the Northwest Maritime Center in Port Townsend. The MRC has organized this forum to increase public understanding of shellfish aquaculture issues, management and impacts by providing a variety of perspectives and emphasizing science-based information. Presenters from the research community, regulatory agencies, environmental groups and shellfish growers will address a range of issues related to ecological, cultural and economic aspects of growing clams, oysters, mussels and geoducks.

Speakers include Jodie Toft (Deputy Director of the Puget Sound Restoration Fund), Kurt Grinnell (Council Member for the Jamestown S’Klallam Tribe), Bobbi Hudson (Executive Director of the Pacific Shellfish Institute), Rick Mraz (WA Dept of Ecology), Dave Kangiser and Mark Toy (WA Dept of Health), Amy Carey (Director of Sound Action) and Dave Steele (owner of Rock Point Oyster Co.).

The program is free, but pre-registration is required. For more info about the program and how to register, go to https://www.jeffersonmrc.org. Funding for this program is provided through the Northwest Straits Commission, Puget Sound Partnership and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. The Northwest Maritime Center is also a sponsor.

About Jefferson County Marine Resources Committee

The Jefferson County Marine Resources Committee (MRC) is a citizen-based volunteer committee appointed by the Jefferson County Board of Commissioners. It is one of seven county-based MRCs which conduct marine and nearshore restoration, conservation, and education projects with diverse partners and community members. For more information visit http://www.jeffersonmrc.org.

Sea star wasting disease: ‘The more we study it, the less we understand’ – CBC

Someone on the Marine Resources Committee asked about this last week. Here’s the latest news on sea star wasting disease.

Volunteers in Campbell River are studying the ongoing problem of sea star wasting disease and what caused its resurgence in recent years. Campbell River Discovery Passage Aquarium manager Ricky Belanger and 11 volunteers embarked on their first sea star count this week at Willow Point in Campbell River. The volunteers spent two hours and surveyed 135 sea stars…. Sea star wasting disease has been plaguing B.C. sea stars since 2013, but this year their conditions have improved. (CBC)

Sea star wasting disease: ‘The more we study it, the less we understand’

State looks to replace Fort Worden pier, boat launch – PDN

A very tricky new plan that, when done, would be a good thing. The pier cannot be maintained forever. It has significantly impacted the beach for decades. With sea level rise, it could be compromised much sooner than hoped. Can it be done without significantly impacting the Marine Science Center? We’ll have to wait and see. These are preliminary planning ideas.

The state Parks and Recreation Commission plans to submit a $10.4 million option to address environmental issues at Fort Worden State Park that include the pier, boat launch and the Port Townsend Marine Science Center. The preliminary preferred alternative, which was presented to about 100 people Monday night at Fort Worden, will go to the state Office of Financial Management by June 30 for consideration before the state Legislature in future biennial capital budgets. The plan incorporates a newly designed pedestrian pier, a relocated Marine Science Center on the upland side of Harbor Defense Way plus a new single-lane elevated boat launch. Brian McLean reports. (Peninsula Daily News)

State looks to replace Fort Worden pier, boat launch

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