More Tsunami Debris Found on Oregon Coast: 30-Foot Vessel
(Depoe Bay, Oregon) – Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife (ODFW) reports finding yet another sizable piece of Japanese tsunami debris on the Oregon coast: this time it's a 30-foot boat that has been embedded in the sand at Gleneden Beach, a little town just north of Depoe Bay.
ODFW said two biologists, Steve Rumrill and Justin Ainsworth, inspected the boat Tuesday about 2:30 p.m. and discovered some marine organisms living on it. The pair reports a large number of pelagic, gooseneck barnacles that had apparently colonized it while the ship was adrift. There were large patches of brown algae which the biologists were not able to narrow down as yet, and some colonies of hyrozoans which are also still not yet identified.
“One individual of the Japanese acorn barnacle was seen,” ODFW said.
So far, the biologists have said it appears to not pose any threat of invasive species as the majority of creatures found on it were from the open ocean. These are common organisms in the ocean and usually pose not threat to ecosystems of the Oregon coast.
The boat was discovered early Tuesday by two beachcombers, found in the dunes near the Salishan resort complex.
ODFW biologists and other scientists from the Hatfield Marine Science Center in Newport quickly made the determination the vessel was most likely debris from the 2011 tsunami in Japan. The side of the vessel has a “Yamaha” sticker on it and some characters inscribed on the bow. Scientists say it looks like a Japanese boat because of the design and the coloring.
“The hull is an unusual design and appears to be a specialty design for some type of commercial fishing or aquaculture activity,” ODFW said.
Lincoln County officials believe it may be the same vessel spotted near the Newport area last week, about two miles offshore. It was spotted by a local resident, but subsequent ocean searches turned up nothing.
The boat will need a little excavating in the removal process as it is partially covered in sand, with the bottom facing up. Oregon State Parks and Recreation will head up the process of taking it away, which will likely begin in the next few days.
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