N. Oregon Coast Sees Tsunami Debris, Hundreds of Pelicans
(Seaside, Oregon) – The combo of storms and then great weather in October made for some interesting finds on the north Oregon coast recently, as some tsunami debris and a whole lotta pelicans found their way to one beach near Seaside. All photos courtesy Seaside Aquarium.
On October 8, Seaside Aquarium received a call about a chunk of concrete with sea life on it. It was very likely tsunami debris from Japan.
Tiffany Boothe, with the aquarium, said recent storms had brought in the debris onto Del Ray Beach, just north of Gearhart and a bit south of Astoria.
“Laden with pacific oysters the cement block was also harboring chitons, limpets, and barnacles,” Boothe said.
Whether or not these were invasive species is still unknown. Aquarium manager Keith Chandler said Oregon State Parks removed the concrete chunk the following day, but Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife did not receive the samples obtained by the Seaside Aquarium until this week.
“They only heard about it through media,” Chandler said.
Chandler didn't know with any certainty whether these were invasive, but his initial guess that some probably were. In any case, the threat was removed quickly.
More interesting critters have been making a splash on the north Oregon coast this week as hundreds – literally hundreds – of brown pelicans were making Del Ray Beach their home earlier today (Wednesday).
Seaside Aquarium and a myriad of others on social media caught the pelicans lounging around the beaches, some wading in the water and others just wandering the beach.
“They are on their way back down south to their breeding grounds in the Gulf of California,” Boothe said.
Chandler said he'd heard reports there were plenty of baitfish in the waters, which often brings fish and birds in great numbers to any of the Oregon coast.
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