The Understudied Harbor Porpoise

harbor porpoise

Although the harbor porpoise is the most abundant and widely dispersed cetacean species in the Salish Sea, we still know very little about its habitat needs, distribution, population trends, life cycle, genetics, behavior and role in the ecosystem. Harbor porpoises feed primarily on fish and are among the smallest of the cetaceans, reaching an average size of about 5 feet and 120 pounds. They can dive deep, more than 655 feet, but usually stay near the surface, coming up regularly to breathe with a distinctive puffing noise that resembles a sneeze. In the Salish Sea, harbor porpoises … [Read more...]

Proceedings of 2011 Rockfish Recovery Workshop published

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NOAA recently published the proceedings of the Rockfish Recovery Workshop we helped host in 2011. It's 124 pages of state of the art science on the status, history and future of rockfish populations, many of which are way down from historic levels and several of which are listed on the Endangered Species List. Download the PDF here: Rockfish Recovery Workshop Proceedings Rockfish are pretty amazing. Some live up to 200 years. Others will find their way back to their rock-pile homes if you transport them to another spot miles away. SeaDoc's role in sponsoring the workshop is a good example … [Read more...]

2011 Rockfish Recovery Workshop recap

This past week (June 28 & 29, 2011) SeaDoc co-hosted a Rockfish Recovery Workshop in Seattle with the State Department of Wildlife and NOAA Fisheries. Nearly 100 scientists, fisheries managers, fishers and SCUBA divers attended the 2-day workshop to discuss the current state of knowledge on rockfish and to identify future needs related to recovering depleted rockfish populations in the Salish Sea. There are 28 species of rockfish in the Salish Sea. Thirteen (13) are listed as species of concern and recently 3 species were listed under the US Endangered Species Act. In addition to … [Read more...]

2011 Forage Fish Needs Assessment Workshop

Sandlance eggs (WA Ecology)

In January 2011, SeaDoc and the Northwest Straits Commission facilitated a meeting of 25 scientists and managers working on forage fish issues on both sides of the US/Canada border.  Forage fish are the small, energy-dense schooling fishes that feed other fish, birds and mammals in the Salish Sea. Some of these species that depend on forage fish are federally listed as endangered or threatened on one or both sides of the border. Unfortunately, there are major gaps in what we know about these important species. The meeting was held at the Peace Arch Park and focused on sharing knowledge … [Read more...]