Sunday, March 25, 2012

Indian Island Field Study

A presentation, titled "The Tides of March" was held on March 15th at the Orcas Fire Station to educate the public about the work being conducted on Indian Island. The presentation included original music and songs, demonstrations, displays, a slide show including a narration introducing the differenct species living in and around Indian Island. Refreshments were also provided. Questions were taken from the audience. One of the goals of the presentation was to increase the number of volunteers involved in the Indian Island field study. Additional volunteers are needed to continue this research. The 2012 Indian Island Field Schedule is below. Double click on the table to expand. We are looking forward to seeing you there.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Following Varvara the Gray Whale

While "Flex's" transmitter fell off while he was along the Oregon coastline, Varvara's continues to transmit her travels. Flex managed to get as far as the Oregon coast before contact was lost in 2011. Varvara has traveled from Russia to the Baja and is now headed back to Sakhalin Is., Russia--her feeding grounds. She has not eaten in 5 months.

View Varvara's travels at

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

What Would You Do?

On a recent trip to the San Diego area, I enjoyed watching the sea lions who regularly haul out on along the waterfront in La Jolla. All day long people watch from the boardwalk above them as they warm up in the sun, compete for the more comfortable spots on the rocks, and swim and dive off the beach. I took a few pictures, including trying out the zoom on my new camera, but didn't look at them till I got back home and downloaded. To my dismay, I realized that the guy in the middle of this picture has a bunch of netting of some kind around his head. (It's more evident if the photo is enlarged, but it's definitely there.) I couldn't tell exactly what it is, or how badly entangled he is, but he seems to be stuck with it. What do you do? I passed the picture along to the Whale Museum, hoping they might have some contacts in the La Jolla area, but is there even any way he could be helped? It's very hard to see things like this and feel like there is not much that can be done. Certainly a sad reminder to all of us that everything we put into our waters has an impact. I hope this guy has been able to extricate himself and that he'll be able to avoid similar encounters in the future! Susan

SAVE THE DATE! May 5th, Fisherman Bay MHO "Day for the Bay" Celebration

The Fisherman Bay Marine Health Observatory will celebrate the beginning of its 2012 research and monitoring season with the Second Annual "Day for the Bay" event on Saturday, May 5 from 9:30 AM till around 3 pm, at the Lopez Community Center. Everyone is invited to participate. The day will include hands-on displays and introductory remarks at the Center in the morning, followed by field trips to several locations around Fisherman Bay for talks and demonstrations on shore and seabirds, impact of climate change on the Bay, plants and animals, and invertebrates. There will be activities for adults and children, and everyone will be able to visit several of these during the morning. Everyone will regroup at the Community Center around noon for a light lunch, discussion of current research projects, and a concert by Dana Lyons. Details will follow as the day gets closer, but we hope you'll save the date and plan to attend.

Friday, March 9, 2012

People Save Beached Dolphins in Brazil

On March 6, about 30 dolphins raced into shore and beached themselves. Luckily the beach was crowded with people who pitched in and pulled the dolphins all back into deeper waters and saved them all. This video is a pleasure to view.