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December 2014 Update

In this issue: SeaDoc helps tie a virus to sea star wasting disease; Holiday giving made easy; Money talks: new project to study economic benefits of no-take marine … [Read More...]

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Abalone dance

Did you ever imagine a Northern Abalone could do this? 23-second video shot in the San Juan Islands in November 2013.

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Harbor porpoise by Florian Graner. Used by permission.

Growing up underwater: harbor porpoise muscle development

Peer-reviewed publication: Noren, S. R., D. P. Noren, and J. K. Gaydos. 2014. Living in the fast lane: rapid development of the locomotor muscle in immature harbor porpoises (Phocoena phocoena). Journal of Comparative Physiology B. December 2014, Volume 184, Issue 8, pp 1065-1076. This study -- based on harbor porpoise tissue samples collected from strandings, fishery bycatch, or observed killings by killer whales -- looked at muscle development in juvenile harbor porpoises to understand … [Read More...]

Billie Swalla

Billie Swalla and Jim West join Science Advisors

Two new scientists have come on board as SeaDoc Science Advisors. Since our inception, this important group has help prioritize and guide our scientific investigations. We’d like to extend a big welcome to Billie Swalla (Director, UW Friday Harbor Labs) and Jim West (Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife)! Billie Swalla is the Director of the University of Washington’s Friday Harbor Laboratories, and joins the Science Advisors to bring the expertise of the Labs to the table. Swalla is … [Read More...]

fish by janna nichols

Economic benefits of SCUBA diving in no-take marine reserves

There’s convincing science that no-take marine reserves help recover rockfish, abalone, and other threatened or endangered species that call these rocky habitats home. But what are the economic costs and benefits of marine reserves? Most of the existing data is about the costs of marine reserves. For example, marine reserves limit fishing, and therefore have a negative effect on the commercial and recreational fishing industry. But very little is known about the economic benefits of … [Read More...]

gull with sea star

Gulls switch to trash-diet as fish stocks run low

Joe Gaydos was quoted in a New Scientist article about the implications of diet changes for gulls. In a recently published paper (find a link to it in the New Scientist article, below), UBC's Louise Blight and collaborators looked at feather samples to understand how gull diets have changed over the past 149 years. The results show that as the birds' diets have changed from fish to more garbage, the result has been population declines and lower fertility in glaucous-winged gulls. Overfishing … [Read More...]

by jared towers

November 2014 Update

In this issue: Avoid the rush - order your Salish Sea book now; What's a 50+ year old bird band doing on an Eastsound beach? Sea star wasting disease update; How do we reduce the effects of plastic pollution on wildlife? SeaDoc welcomes two new board members; November marine science lecture: minke whales with Jared Towers; Video: Scientists study killer whale health from the air. … [Read More...]


SeaDoc welcomes two new board members

This month SeaDoc welcomes two new board members, Ingrid Rasch and Dave Roberts. Ingrid Rasch is a community activist and non-profit volunteer. She currently chairs the board of Earth Economics, a non-profit that focuses on rigorous analysis of the value of natural systems. In her career she was VP of Human Resources for Sonus Pharmaceuticals and Senior VP of Human Resources at the $10+ billion Stop & Shop Supermarket Company. She also led the first human resources department at Microsoft. … [Read More...]

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Basking shark copyright Florian Graner. Used with permission.

Tracking Transboundary Trouble

How do you know if your ecosystem is in trouble? One clue is the number of species that are in decline or endangered. If that number gets bigger over time, you’re probably heading in the wrong direction. Publications We publish our Species of Concern … [Read More...]

Live Stranded Killer Whale in Hawaii, Photo courtesy of Jessica Aschettino, NOAA/NMFS/PIRO Permit #932-1489-09

Killer Whale Necropsy Protocol (2014)

Killer whale strandings are rare events and biologists and veterinarians should use every stranding as an opportunity to learn more about this species. This necropsy and disease testing protocol, first published in 2005 and updated in 2014, will provide guidelines … [Read More...]

Sunflower Sea star (1)

Sea Star Wasting Disease

Update November 17 2014 SeaDoc was among dozens of collaborators that recently published a paper linking a virus to sea star wasting disease. The paper showed that a virus was involved in the massive outbreak that, since June 2013, has killed millions of sea … [Read More...]

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