Case study: how SeaDoc makes a difference

Forage Fish of the Salish Sea from Friends of Skagit Beaches on Vimeo.

Our goal is to ensure that SeaDoc science makes a difference, but does it? And if so, how? Check out this sweet new video on forage fish (above) by Friends of Skagit Beaches and the Department of Ecology.

We're pleased Joe Gaydos gets a cameo talking about how important forage fish are, but we really want you to check out what Senator Rolfes has to say. She sponsored forage fish legislation in 2015 that funded two important studies to help the Department of Fish and Wildlife implement their forage fish management plan from the1990s, which was conceptually way ahead of its time but never adequately funded.

In the video, Senator Rolfes says she was inspired to take action by an op-ed in the Seattle Times that directly linked the decline in marine birds to the decline in forage fish.

This op-ed drew heavily on another article, this one by Craig Welch, that focused on SeaDoc's groundbreaking marine bird population study, in which SeaDoc's Dr. Ignacio Vilchis and collaborators were able to show that diving birds that depend on forage fish were many times more likely to be in decline than other bird species.

While the course of events varies from case to case, the take home message here is that focused, well-targeted science, like that which SeaDoc promotes, does make a difference. It's also important to remember is that Dr. Vilchis' large and complex 2-year science project and publication was funded by a SeaDoc supporter's (Stephanie Wagner) legacy bequest.

So don't forget, SeaDoc science does make a difference and real credit for change belongs to the generous donors like you who make it possible.