Reports from the Field – August

ODFW Updates

Oceanography surveys

Oceanographic Monitoring: Moorings that have been collecting data all summer at Otter Rock, Cascade Head, and Cape Falcon will be retrieved next month. These will tell us trends in temperature, salinity, and oxygen across our central and north coast reserves.

Sea Star Surveys: We conducted intertidal sea star monitoring at Cascade Head with the help of some eager volunteers. Despite some challenging low tides, we identified over 200 stars across a range of sizes and very few signs of sea star wasting disease.

Summer Student Interns: We hosted two Oregon Sea Grant Summer Scholars and a Doris Duke Conservation Scholar for 10 weeks this summer. These interns helped our team in conducting human dimensions research.

Business, Visitor and Recreational Fisher Surveys: To check on current perceptions of Oregon’s marine reserves, out summer interns conducted surveys of local business owners and coastal visitors at several of the reserves. They contacted over 340 area businesses and interviewed 1,482 visitors at the reserves. We also conducted a statewide survey of recreational fishing license holders and received 7,759 responses. We’re excited to see the results from these new studies and will compare these results to our earlier studies to see if awareness and perceptions of the marine reserves have changed over time since they were first implemented over a decade ago.

Collaborator Updates

Juvenile Fish Surveys: Our OSU collaborators, with help from the Oregon Coast Aquarium, continued to collect juvenile fish samples at Otter Rock Marine Reserve and Cape Foulweather Comparison Area this month. After a huge pulse in the QGBC rockfish complex (Quillback/Gopher/Black-and-Yellow/Copper/China Rockfish) last month, the pulse seems to have subsided. The team plans on wrapping-up their field season at the end of the month, with the final collection of fish samples and retrieval of all eight moorings.