Thursday, March 3, 2016

Puget Sound Wastewater Study

A new study of emerging contaminants entering Puget Sound in wastewater plant effluent found some of the nation’s highest concentrations of pharmaceuticals and other chemical compounds, and detected many in fish at concentrations that may affect their growth or behavior.

The study by scientists from NOAA Fisheries’ Northwest Fisheries Science Center and the University of Washington tested for 150 of the contaminants and detected 81 of the compounds in wastewater flowing into Puget Sound estuaries.

They include pharmaceuticals such as the antidepressant Prozac and the diabetes medication metformin, personal care products such as antibacterial compounds from soap and industrial chemicals.

The study also examined juvenile Chinook salmon and Pacific staghorn sculpin, both fish native to Puget Sound, and found 42 of the emerging compounds in their tissue.

Some of the compounds such as fluoxetine (also known as Prozac), the diabetes drug metformin and the antibacterial compound triclosan were present in fish tissues at levels that may be high enough to adversely affect their growth, reproduction, or behavior.

The research did not examine the potential effects on human health of consuming fish from Puget Sound, and it is unknown if these levels of emerging contaminants detected in fish could affect people.

The study funded in large part by the Washington Department of Ecology examined wastewater plant effluent, estuary water, and fish found in the Puyallup River estuary in Tacoma’s Commencement Bay, Sinclair Inlet in Bremerton, and the Nisqually River estuary near Tacoma.

The Nisqually estuary was included as a reference site because it does not have a major wastewater treatment plant and has been used historically as a reference site for toxicity studies.

Unexpectedly, they found that fish and water in the Nisqually estuary also contained high concentrations of some emerging compounds.

The study also noted that the relatively high pH of seawater often makes the contaminants more bioavailable and therefore more likely to be absorbed by marine fish compared to fish in freshwater, Meador said.

source: Northwest Fisheries Science Center

Saturday, February 27, 2016

Salmon Ocean Ecology Meeting 2016

Salmon Ocean Ecology Meeting 2016
March 29-31, 2016
Baranof Westmark Hotel & Conference Center, Juneau, AK
phone: 1-800-544-0970
 www.westmarkhotels.com/destinations/juneau-hotel/
 
The Salmon Ocean Ecology Meeting brings together salmon researchers from the coasts of Alaska, British Columbia, Washington, Oregon, and California.

source: Alaska Fisheries Science Center

Thursday, February 11, 2016

National Coastal Wetlands Conservation Grants (USA)

More than $20 million will help fund 28 projects in 12 coastal states to protect, restore or enhance more than 10,000 acres of coastal wetlands and adjacent upland habitats under the National Coastal Wetlands Conservation Grant Program.

State and local governments, private landowners, conservation groups, and other partners will contribute over $20 million in additional funds to these projects, which acquire, restore or enhance coastal wetlands and adjacent uplands to provide long-term conservation benefits to fish and wildlife and their habitats.

“The Fish and Wildlife Service’s Coastal Wetlands Grants provide critical funding in the effort to protect some of our most fragile and at-risk wildlife habitats, said Service Director Dan Ashe. “With rising ocean levels eating away at coastal wetlands from one side and development claiming more and more acres on the other, our coastal wetlands are being squeezed into an ever thinner sliver of land. Never before has it been so important to protect these places.”

States and territories receiving funds are California, Georgia, Maine, Maryland, Michigan, New Hampshire, New Jersey, North Carolina, Oregon, South Carolina, Virginia, and Washington.

More information is available at:

http://www.fws.gov/coastal/CoastalGrants/index.html.

source: U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

Monday, January 25, 2016

2016 Shape of the Coast

The 2016 Shape of the Coast is scheduled for 8:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. on Feb. 12, at the Friday Center in Chapel Hill. This event is part of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill’s School of Law Festival of Legal Learning.

The coastal session is co-sponsored by the N.C. Coastal Resources Law, Planning and Policy Center; North Carolina Sea Grant; and the UNC Chapel Hill’s School of Law.

The program for the State of the Coast will include updates from the N.C. Coastal Resources Commission, the legislature and the court.

"This year’s program includes a set of timely and robust coastal law topics. Participants will learn how attorneys can most effectively work with scientists as expert witnesses, and about recent and ongoing litigation related to our public trust beaches," notes Lisa Schiavinato, center co-director and Sea Grant coastal law, policy and community development specialist.

"Whether you’re an attorney, business owner, scientist, regulator or policymaker, you’ll have a chance to learn about coastal law issues that are relevant to you as a professional."

To register, visit www.law.unc.edu/cle/festival.

source: North Carolina Sea Grant

Monday, January 18, 2016

Delaware Wetlands Conference 2016

Delaware Wetlands Conference
February, 3-4, 2016
Chase Center
Wilmington, DE

Delaware's DNREC will host the 2016 Delaware Wetland Conference which focuses on advancing wetland science and conservation through its theme “Educate, Connect, Protect.”

One of the largest gatherings of wetlands professionals on the Atlantic Coast, the conference takes place Feb. 3 and 4 at the Chase Center on the Riverfront in Wilmington. This year's agenda includes two full days of presenting and sharing wetlands expertise.

The conference brings together nearly 300 wetlands professionals, students and environmental policy makers. They will take advantage of 43 diverse presentations, along with interactive workshops, abundant networking opportunities and an exhibition hall with nearly two dozen displays showcasing programs and products available to attendees.

DNREC’s Wetland Monitoring and Assessment Program and the Coastal Training Program organized the conference.

Registration closes Jan. 27. Interested parties can access online registration and the conference agenda at http://de.gov/dewetlandsconference. Interested parties may register for one or both days.

Saturday, December 26, 2015

Mississippi Red Tides 2015

Along the Mississippi Coast, unusual red tides (harmful algae blooms) are affecting commercial fishing, outdoor recreation, and other activities.

In December, the Mississippi Department of Environmental Quality (MDEQ), through its Beach Monitoring Program, issued a preemptive closure for all beach segments along the Mississippi Gulf Coast.

In addition, officials with the Mississippi Department of Marine Resources (MDMR) closed oyster reefs. The decision was made as a precautionary measure due to the proximity of potentially harmful algae blooms in the Mississippi Sound.

The Mississippi Department of Marine Resources has information for the public about harmful algal blooms, or red tide, on its website, dmr.ms.gov.

source: Mississippi Department of Marine Resources

Sunday, November 29, 2015

South Carolina Shark Tagging

South Carolina Department of Natural Resources (DNR) biologists recently deployed a satellite transmitter on a 12-foot, 4-inch tiger shark in Port Royal Sound.

The large female, nicknamed "Harry-Ette" is the latest tiger shark to be tagged by a collaborative project that is studying the importance of South Carolina waters to tiger sharks.

Efforts to better understand tiger sharks in the Atlantic Ocean have been complicated by a lack of data. Until recently, researchers knew little about the tiger shark’s life history, when and where they migrate, and how they use different habitats, especially the coastal waters of the southeastern United States.

Harry-Ette is the twelfth tiger shark fitted with a satellite transmitter off the South Carolina coast in a joint effort between DNR, nonprofit research organization OCEARCH, the College of Charleston, and Captain Chip Michalove of Outcast Charters in Hilton Head.

The project crew has tagged 27 tiger sharks in total, although only twelve have been fitted with satellite tags. All 27 sharks were tagged in Port Royal and St. Helena Sounds.

The recent capture of Harry-Ette as well as another mature female tiger, both with fresh mating wounds, leads scientists to believe that Port Royal Sound and South Carolina nearshore waters are likely important to the reproductive cycles of tiger sharks.

Shark enthusiasts can track tiger sharks tagged in South Carolina by accessing OCEARCH's near-real time, free online Global Shark Tracker or by downloading the Global Shark Tracker App available for Apple and Android platforms.

source: South Carolina Department of Natural Resources