They removed a large seawall along the Salish Sea shoreline and discovered that sediment from the dam removal had huge benefits for their project. Puget Sound Eelgrass Monitoring Data Viewer, 2016 Salish Sea Toxics Monitoring Review: A Selection of Research, Harbor seal (Phoca vitulina) tolerance to vessels under different levels of boat traffic, Finding a strategy to accelerate Chinook recovery, Bringing the shellfish back: How Drayton Harbor overcame a legacy of pollution, Study says predators may play major role in chinook salmon declines, Eelgrass in Puget Sound is stable overall, but some local beaches suffering, Puget Sound marine and nearshore grant program results, final analysis report, Shoreline Armoring in an inland sea: Science-based recommendations for policy implementation, A review of Puget Sound marine and nearshore grant program results, Part 3, Concerns rise over rogue chemicals in the environment, Devastating transboundary impacts of sea star wasting disease on subtidal asteroids, Salish Sea snapshots: Invasive species and human health, Second invasive green crab found in Puget Sound, Salish Sea snapshots: Plastics in fish may also affect seabirds, Green crabs could impair Puget Sound shellfish operations, Building a baseline of invasive species in Puget Sound, Invasive marine species: Washington state priorities, A review of Puget Sound marine and nearshore grant program results, Part 2, Salish Sea snapshots: Detecting harmful algal blooms, Advances in technology help researchers evaluate threatened Puget Sound steelhead, Mystery remains in deaths of young salmon, Contaminants higher in resident 'blackmouth' Chinook, The growing number of species of concern in the Salish Sea suggests ecosystem decay is outpacing recovery, Conference snapshot: The number of species of concern in the Salish Sea is growing steadily, State guidelines offer new approaches to shoreline protection, Sources of sand: maps show crucial “feeder bluffs”, Studies point to gap in permits for shoreline armoring, Shoreline restoration turns to private property owners, Spawning habitat for forage fish being lost to rising tides, Forage fish are losing places to lay their eggs, Shoreline armoring's effect on the food web, Disappearance and return of harbor porpoise to Puget Sound, Contaminants of emerging concern in a large temperate estuary, Population diversity in Pacific herring of the Puget Sound, Water and nutrient circulation in Puget Sound, Conjoined fetal twins in a harbor seal (Phoca vitulina). A 2019 article in the Journal of Wildlife Diseases looked at trace element concentrations of heavy metals in the livers of harbor seals that died and stranded in the San Juan Islands. The workshop to review conditions during 2014 took place at the Institute of Ocean Sciences, Sidney, B.C. So far, recovery of the species has fallen short of that goal, but transplanting efforts are showing promise. Coral density on ridge habitat had a similar pattern to colonized This study provides Sound-wide estimates of nearshore habitat distribution, and abundance. Several years ago, scientists began knocking down another barrier about a mile away from the river's delta. It evaluates the threats each project poses to natural resources important to Coast Salish first nations and tribes. Today, we understand that estuaries—where freshwater and saltwater merge—are among the most productive places for life to exist. This provides a visual picture of the health of Puget Sound, which they call Eyes Over Puget Sound or EOPS. The search for why large numbers of spawning coho salmon have been dying in Puget Sound's urban streams goes as far back as the 1980s and culminated this year with the discovery of a previously unidentified chemical related to automobile tires. Field notes: Are Puget Sound herring limited by loss of eelgrass? Scientists are testing ways to use transplanted shellfish such as mussels to monitor toxic contaminants in Puget Sound. In recent decades, hundreds of millions of dollars have been spent to restore habitat for Puget Sound salmon. Surveys of these species are used to monitor the health of the foodweb, as well as levels of toxic contaminants in the seafloor. A December 2014 paper in the journal Aquatic Ecosystem Health & Management describes a project to identify transboundary ecosystem indicators for the Salish Sea. Water quality, Invertebrates, Marine habitat, Nearshore habitat, National Estuary Program. When Cornell University ecologist Drew Harvell wrote her book "Ocean Outbreak," she couldn't have known that 2020 would be the year of COVID-19. This article continues our coverage of the ecological impacts of disease in Puget Sound. In this article, we look at how scientists are gauging their progress. Harbor porpoise (Phocoena phocoena) are one of the most frequently sighted cetaceans in the Salish Sea. The projects were conducted between 2011-2015 with support from the EPA's National Estuary Program. The purpose of SSEA’s Nearshore Fish Habitat Evaluation Project is to inventory fish habitat in selected nearshore areas of Severn Sound and produce a Fish Habitat Management Plan that will provide local planning authorities and review agencies with current information on nearshore habitat conditions. They have been intensively studied within the Salish Sea and this species profile provides an overview of what is known about them. This event brought together a diverse group of government officials, community leaders, First Nations and tribal members, environmental managers, scientists and academics to learn from each other about the state and threats to the shared ecosystem. Ground data and aiarphoto interpretation were used to map shoreline characteristics such as wave energy, substrate type, and water regime. Although overall eelgrass abundance appears to be stable in Puget Sound, some local areas are showing declines. They hope the birds can be used as an indicator of Puget Sound health. Canadian and U.S. governments differ on special status for bocaccio in the Salish Sea. That is prompting a deeper look at what makes these birds sick, and how local populations are faring. This paper summarizes a 2014 report ranking the greatest human-caused threats to the Puget Sound ecosystem. Now, federal biologists and legal experts are struggling to decide if spring Chinook should be granted their own legal protection under the Endangered Species Act. In this episode, we speak with Lisa Vandiver, a Marine Habitat Restoration Specialist with NOAA’s Restoration Center and Rob Ferguson, a watershed management specialist with NOAA’s Coral Reef Conservation Program, to learn about how NOAA … Seasonal declines among some regional bird species could hold important clues to the overall health of the ecosystem. A 2014 paper in the journal Aquatic Mammals examines coastal river otter predation on rockfish at three islands in the Salish Sea. The Puget Sound Nearshore Ecosystem Restoration Project (PSNERP) works to assess the health of Puget Sound nearshore environments and provides strategies for their protection and restoration. A 2015 paper in the journal Limnology and Oceanography presents new data on ocean acidification in the Salish Sea. Approximately 28 species of rockfish are reported from Puget Sound, spanning a range of life-history types, habitats, and ecological niches. The conditions may threaten Dungeness crabs by 2050 and will be especially pronounced in the winter, the study says. Meet our ocean acidification expert, Stephen Gonski. Browse a collection of shellfish photos provided by the Swinomish Tribe. The study indicated exposure to trace elements (naturally occurring, human-introduced, or both) in the Salish Sea; however, the study reports that trace element toxicity is not a major threat to harbor seal health. The Elwha River has become famous as the site of the largest dam removal project in U.S. history. Getting bigger faster can help save juvenile Chinook salmon from a gauntlet of hungry predators ranging from birds and marine mammals to larger fish. The following text was written by Puget Sound Model co-creator John H. Lincoln (1915-2001) and is provided courtesy of the University of Washington School of Oceanography. Salish Sea Nearshore Habitat Recovery Project . The following is a brief review of some of these algae and their effects. Pigeon guillemots have attracted relatively little scientific attention compared to other seabirds in Puget Sound. Download presentations from the Study Panel on Ecosystem-based Management of Forage Fish held August 25, 2013 at the University of Washington’s Friday Harbor Lab, San Juan Island. It provides some background on the workings of the Puget Sound ecosystem and the history of contamination problems in the Sound. It reports the results of sampling undertaken in 1991, the most current year for which the data have under gone analysis and quality assurance tests. Restoring the Nearshore Reef Habitat at Pāiko. During June, near normal air temperatures and continued low precipitation have resulted in highly variable freshwater inputs to Puget Sound. Juvenile fish are migrating out of the estuaries and meeting a complex thermal habitat. "Our coasts and oceans routinely experience significant environmental crises," writes Dr. Usha Varanasi, who makes a case for staying ahead of the curve and "frontloading the science." A 2014 article in the journal Northwestern Naturalist shows how Harbor Seal tissues can reflect regional and temporal trends in contaminants in Puget Sound. A June 19, 2013 paper in the journal PLoS ONE hypothesizes that regional declines in Western Grebe populations may be related to decreasing numbers of forage fish. An oyster shell provides habitat for some algae and invertebrates, whereas cubic miles of sunlit water in Puget Sound comprise the habitat for many planktonic species. And what does their disappearance say about the health of the Salish Sea? Sediment health in Central Puget Sound has shown a recent steep decline, according to a report by the Washington Department of Ecology. Puget Sound is the second largest estuary in the United States. The region's famed mollusks provide more than just money and jobs. 10/29/2014. Harbor seal numbers were severely reduced in Puget Sound during the first half of the twentieth century by a state-financed population control program. A new study provides strong evidence of substantial migration interference and increased mortality risk associated with the Hood Canal Bridge for aquatic animals, and may partially explain low early marine survival rates observed in Hood Canal steelhead populations. King County contains four major marine habitats: backshore, intertidal and shallow subtidal, deep subtidal, and riverine/sub-estuarine. Sixty scientists, graduate students, and fisheries policy experts convened; showcasing ongoing research, conservation, and management efforts targeting forage fish from regional and national perspectives. New research looks at the pronounced biological and ecological effects of these common shoreline structures, especially for tiny beach-dwelling creatures that make up the base of the food web. The authors hypothesize that these factors may help explain the variability in diet among harbor seals observed at different haul-out site groups in the Salish Sea. Over 950 delegates attended. As the oceans warm due to climate change, scientists expect incidences of disease to increase in marine ecosystems including the Salish Sea. A November 2013 literature review by Washingtom Sea Grant synthesizes the state of the science of geoduck clams and the potential environmental impacts of geoduck aquaculture in the Puget Sound region. The 1993 Puget Sound Update—the fourth annual report of this program—evaluates the data collected by PSAMP in 1992 (the most recent year for which the data have undergone quality assurance review and interpretation) and compares these data to past information on Puget Sound water quality. During the summers of 1996 and 1997, 230 miles of intertidal shoreline were surveyed in the Skagit County area. A number of on-going monitoring studies in the nearshore subtidal habitats (e.g., Partnership for Interdisciplinary Studies of Coastal Oceans (PISCO); MBNMS monitoring projects) indicate that large, structural algae, seagrasses, and sessile habitat-forming invertebrates (e.g., sponges, anemones, tube worms) appear to be healthy and no major perturbations have been observed. Healthy coral reefs are amongst the most biologically diverse, culturally significant, and economically valuable ecosystems on Earth. Eelgrass, a marine plant crucial to the success of migrating juvenile salmon and spawning Pacific herring, is stable and flourishing in Puget Sound, despite a doubling of the region’s human population and significant shoreline development over the past several decades. Coccolithophores are blooming in Hood Canal. In the second quarter (Oct-December) we held a half day forage fish workshop that netted a total of nine new volunteers and an evening nearshore and forage fish presentation that netted four. This paper uses water quality data to examine the relationship between environmental condition and recreational use of parks in Puget Sound. The Puget Sound ecosystem is shaped by its physical environment. The journal is co-edited by Patrick Christie of our editorial board. Historically, the actions that led to ecosystem degradation were intended to improve the quality of life for Puget Sound residents, but with closed shellfish beds, flooding, species decline, and other impacts it is clear that ecosystem rebuilding efforts are needed. Under the federal Clean Water Act, states are required to assess the quality of their surface waters and compile a list of polluted water bodies. A December 2013 report identifies marine and terrestrial bird species for use as indicators within the Puget Sound Partnership's "Vital Signs" for ecosystem health. The nearshore IBI metrics were community composition metrics based on the North American population declined by 52% overall. Genetic analysis of the cutthroat trout in three of the watersheds suggest two support native populations. They hope the data can be used to protect sea creatures from the growing amounts of trash littering the world's oceans. In the course of building homes, businesses, roads, and infrastructure, the lands and waters of Puget Sound have been drastically modified. This is the second annual Puget Sound Update. Are we making progress on salmon recovery? Several research groups in the region are investigating biological markers and/or impacts of Contaminant of Emerging Concern (CEC) exposure in different organisms. A 2015 report from the Whatcom Conservation District and Whatcom County describes a pilot watershed characterization study focusing on the Terrell Creek and Birch Bay areas. Experts say fighting the waves with conventional seawalls may not be the answer. The list was prepared as part of the Washington State Department of Ecology’s Marine Sediment Monitoring Program (MSMP). Its legacy of contamination predates World War II and the waterway continues to pollute Puget Sound through stormwater runoff. Nearshore Habitat Mapping. The Pacific Marine and Estuarine Fish Habitat Partnership (PMEP) is a nationally recognized partnership that seeks to advance regional and national goals relating to juvenile fish habitat. A 2019 story map produced by the University of Washington Puget Sound Institute in collaboration with the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife shows how shoreline armoring can often be replaced by softer, shore-friendly features. We restore shorelines to increase the amount of healthy nearshore habitat for all marine organisms, especially forage fish, that utilize the Salish Sea’s intertidal and nearshore habitat areas. The blueback salmon (Oncorhynchus nerka) is a unique strain of sockeye that returns primarily to the Quinault river system. They are members of the auk family, with stocky bodies adapted to “flying” underwater as they dive in pursuit of a wide range of fish and invertebrate prey. The 2015 Puget Sound Fact Book brings together statistics and other information about the health and makeup of the Puget Sound ecosystem. Why did all the grebes leave? Great Lakes coastal and nearshore habitats have deteriorated both in function and quality. Where shoreline bulkheads remain in place, the loss of spawning habitat used by surf smelt is likely to reach 80 percent. Invasive species are considered a top threat to the balance of ecosystems worldwide. This is the first annual report of the Puget Sound Ambient Monitoring Program (PSAMP); it briefly describes PSAMP, explains the significance of each type of measurement, and provides initial interpretation of the results. Nearshore habitat is shorthand for tidal marsh, wetlands, and river estuaries where land and water combine to support life of all kinds, from shorebirds to juvenile salmon and steelhead. This article looks at Puget Sound's geologic history as well as dynamic factors such as the flow of its rivers and currents. The pinto abalone was a popular sport catch for divers in the Salish Sea until its numbers plummeted to near extinction. In March we approached the coldest water temperatures of the year. Using citizen science data from 36 years of bird counts, researchers were able to look at population trends up and down the entire West Coast, finding that abundance of grebes decreased in the Salish Sea but increased in southern California. Their numbers have since increased, but they remain a Species of Concern in the state of Washington. Scientists are just starting to understand the extent of these losses. Environmental engineers and chemists at the University of Washington Tacoma have identified a mysterious compound implicated in the deaths of large numbers of coho salmon in Puget Sound. The restoration of eelgrass (Zostera marina L.) is a high priority for Puget Sound ecosystem recovery. The report emphasizes the impacts of shoreline armoring on survey respondents' sense of place in the region. Endangered Southern Resident killer whales depend on these salmon for prey, making this habitat important for the whales also. Juvenile Puget Sound Chinook salmon spend their first critical months in saltwater feeding and growing in the sheltered water of nearshore habitat. Scientists argue that herring managers should take a tip from stock market investors and diversify the population’s “portfolio.”. Drugs like Prozac and cocaine have been showing up in the region’s salmon. But less obvious are the cumulative changes from human land use activities, such as bulkheads, docks, permanent removal of native vegetation, and loss of native habitat in marine and upland areas. Little is known about mortality factors in marine-foraging river otters. Concerns rise over potential impacts of disease on the ecosystem, Evaluating threats in multinational marine ecosystems: A Coast Salish first nations and tribal perspective, Birch Bay characterization and watershed planning pilot – taking action, A review of Puget Sound marine and nearshore grant program results, Part 1, State of Knowledge: Climate Change in Puget Sound, Persistent contaminants in Puget Sound: Overcoming a toxic legacy, Fishes of the Salish Sea: a compilation and distribution analysis, Puget Sound: a uniquely diverse and productive estuary, 2014 state of salmon in watersheds executive summary, Evidence shows that gulls are shifting their diets from marine to terrestrial sources, Review of the marine environment and biota of Strait of Georgia, Puget Sound and Juan de Fuca Strait, Conservation and ecology of marine forage fishes— Proceedings of a research symposium, September 2012, Increased harbor porpoise mortality in the Pacific Northwest, USA: understanding when higher levels may be normal, 2008 Estuary and salmon restoration program, 2010 Estuary and salmon restoration program annual report, Sound indicators: a review for the Puget Sound Partnership, State of the physical, biological and selected fishery resources of Pacific Canadian marine ecosystems in 2014, 2012 state of salmon in watersheds executive summary, Subsistence fishing in a 21st century capitalist society: From commodity to gift, An inland sea high nitrate-low chlorophyll (HNLC) region with naturally high pCO2, Dissolved oxygen and hypoxia in Puget Sound, Atlas of seal and sea lion haulout sites in Washington, Spatial and temporal patterns in smolt survival of wild and hatchery coho salmon in the Salish Sea, Time of emergence of climate change signals in the Puget Sound Basin, Online resource identifies 'time of emergence' for Puget Sound climate impacts, Forty years of change in forage fish and jellyfish abundance across greater Puget Sound, Washington (USA): anthropogenic and climate associations, State of Washington status report for the tufted puffin, Foraging differences between male and female harbor seals present challenges for fisheries management, Status and trends for seagrasses in Puget Sound from 2010-2013, New book focuses on the natural history of the Salish Sea, Ranking the greatest threats to Puget Sound: A summary of the 2014 Puget Sound Pressures Assessment, Top–down control by great blue herons regulates seagrass-associated epifauna, Framework for prioritizing monitoring of CECs in the Pacific Northwest, Stimulus-dependent response to disturbance affecting the activity of killer whales, Taxonomic guides to benthic invertebrates of Puget Sound, Population structure and intergeneric hybridization in harbour porpoises Phocoena phocoena in British Columbia, Canada, Shellfish restoration and protection in Kitsap Public Health District, Development of a stormwater retrofit plan for Water Resources Inventory Area (WRIA) 9: Comprehensive needs and cost assessment and extrapolation to Puget Sound, Gifts from the sea: shellfish as an ecosystem service, Native shellfish in nearshore ecosystems of Puget Sound, Health of the Salish Sea as measured using transboundary ecosystem indicators, Ancient clam gardens of the Northwest Coast of North America, Virus associated with sea-star wasting disease, Ecological effect of a nonnative seagrass spreading in the Northeast Pacific: A review of Zostera japonica, Habitat limitation and spatial variation in Pacific herring egg survival, Pierce County shellfish watersheds project, Brighter future for salmon at downtown seawall, Seeking higher calories for Puget Sound killer whales, Assessing ecological correlates of marine bird declines to inform marine conservation, Citizens now the leading cause of toxics in Puget Sound, State of the physical, biological and selected fishery resources of Pacific Canadian marine ecosystems in 2013, No salmon left behind: The importance of early growth and freshwater restoration. This toxic algae is expected to increase as the climate changes, bringing with it new and potentially more severe outbreaks of shellfish poisonings. The Washington Department of Natural Resources is studying new ways of increasing ecologically important eelgrass habitat in Puget Sound. A 2015 report from the University of Washington Puget Sound Institute summarizes and reviews 14 EPA-funded projects focusing on Puget Sound's marine and nearshore environments. Though pelagic in winter, puffins gather on islands and headlands during spring and summer to breed and raise their young. This paper describes a multi-year effort testing whether shoreline enhancements at the Olympic Sculpture Park in Seattle have improved conditions for fish and invertebrates as compared to armored shorelines. The loss of nearshore habitat is the most significant threat to the health of marine waters in Puget Sound and Georgia Basin (British Columbia/Washington Marine Science Panel, 1994). Eelgrass (Zostera marina L.) is an aquatic flowering plant common in tidelands and shallow waters along much of Puget Sound’s shoreline. This 2008 report highlights the vision and accomplishments of ESRP in advancing an ecosystem restoration strategy in Puget Sound to restore the ecosystem processes that are essential for a self-sustaining coastal ecosystem. Volunteer researchers are tracking the plastic and other debris washing up on Puget Sound's beaches. Forests in their bodies because of the Puget Sound and Whidbey Basin spawning habitat used by surf smelt likely! In their bodies because of the San Juan County report addresses sustainable planning! Basin of Puget Sound with funding from the University of Washington examines when and where climate change can... Checkup to a keyword database to look at how scientists are gauging their progress of Sound..., estuaries, and sustained Resources macroalgae is drifting as mats on the findings of the cutthroat trout three. 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