Oregon Coast Citizen Science Day and Talk on Tsunami Debris
Published 06/17/2016 at 7:11 PM PDT
By Oregon Coast Beach Connection staff
(Depoe Bay, Oregon) - The weekend of June 24 and 25 will be a special weekend on the central Oregon coast that's entirely devoted to the Otter Rock Marine Reserve and the citizen science that goes on there through CoastWatch. It includes guided walks, a talk on tsunami debris and various demonstrations at the site, which is close to Depoe Bay and Newport.
All events are free, but the talk on tsunami debris happens in Lincoln City, about 15 miles to the north on June 24. The rest of the events happen at the marine gardens area, next to Devil's Punchbowl on June 25.
The day before, on Friday, June 24, marine debris researcher John Chapman will give a talk on what scientists been learning from the last four years of incoming tsunami debris. It takes place at 6:30 p.m. at the Oregon Coast Community College’s Lincoln City branch (3788 High School Dr.), in Room 208. Doors open at 6 p.m. The event, sponsored by the CoastWatch program, is free and open to all; a $5 donation is suggested.
Chapman will talk about the research done on tsunami debris since 2012, which has revealed many things about how invasive species can be transported across the ocean. This subject is still highly relevant considering the surges of debris coming in over the last year.
Chapman is a researcher at the Hatfield Marine Science Center and courtesy assistant professor of fisheries with Oregon State University. His research focuses on aquatic biological invasions, invertebrate zoology and crustacean taxonomy.
For more information about this event, or about CoastWatch’s citizen science projects, contact Fawn Custer at (541) 270-0027, firstname.lastname@example.org
On Saturday's Citizen Science Day, it all begins at 9 a.m., when Fawn Custer, CoastWatch’s volunteer coordinator, will lead a walk exploring both tidepools and beach wrack. Also, Athena Crichton from the Hatfield Marine Science Center will be answering questions about the numerous tide pools in the area. Custer, Crichton and CoastWatch's Karen Driscoll will provide demonstrations of CoastWatch science projects that examine marine debris and that look out for the wasting disease that has affected the entire population of sea stars on the Oregon coast.
You'll also find a talk about beached birds and learn techniques for monitoring them.
Following all this, it's time for a break at 1 p.m., where you can chow down on s'mores and hot dogs. The day caps off with another walk, this time examining high tide and the driftline.
Community Science Day is an opportunity to dig more deeply into Oregon coast natural history and its citizen science, as well as engage with other fans of the beaches. CoastWatch director Phillip Johnson said the hope is that more people will become interested in the ideas of citizen science and start to participate.
“We’re also looking for enthusiastic citizen scientists who might be interested in serving as leaders for the new CoastWatch Community Science Team, which will serve to coordinate our seven citizen science projects in the Otter Rock Marine Reserve area and assist Fawn Custer in providing public education about shoreline science and engaging the local community with the marine reserve,” Johnson said.
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