SHORELINE EDUCATION FOR AWARENESS CELEBRATES 30 YEARS OF ENVIRONMENTAL EDUCATION
2020 is a year that no one will soon forget. All human life throughout the world has been devastated by the Covid-19 pandemic, dramatically changing the way we live and work. In the midst of this global crisis, there are still good things that we can and should celebrate. Anniversaries are almost always a cause to rejoice. So, the Shoreline Education for Awareness (SEA) board, volunteers, and members at large want everyone to know that SEA turns 30 this year. Known by many locals as the folk in blue jackets offering spotting scopes to visitors, because of the pandemic, SEA this year is planning a different approach: “virtual tours” and “virtual seminars.” They plan to use their website and Facebook page to set up live and recorded sessions for viewing the coastal wildlife and for attending “live” and recorded seminars where the latest, best research on Oregon’s coastal, marine ecosystem will be presented by experts in the field.
Founded in 1990 by Bill and Joan Russell and Owen and Sara Duvall, this all-volunteer organization has been educating and thrilling visitors to beautiful Bandon-by-the-Sea’s Coquille Point and Face Rock Wayside with the wonders of our perennial seabird population (75,000 -100,000) who come to these two points in Bandon every Summer to mate and to raise their young). At Bandon’s two lookouts, visitors are treated to up close viewing through SEA’s spotting scopes, giving the public moments of awe and wonder as they get close-up looks at nesting cormorants, oyster catchers, common murres, pigeon guillemots, California and glaucous gulls, and (of course) the crème de la crème for so many – the tufted puffin!
SEA also staffs Simpson Reef (just below Cape Arago). At Simpson Reef visitors are entertained by the pinnipeds that haul out to rest on the reefs and islands or feed in the rich waters surrounding them. All four species of Oregon’s pinnipeds (harbor seals, California Sea Lions, Steller Sea Lions, and the biggest of all – Elephant Seals) hang out here in numbers from 200 to 2,000. “WOW!” is all many of the up to 20,000 annual visitors to all three of these overlooks have to say.
In 2005 Sea became a Friends Group of the US Fish and Wildlife Services, supporting their efforts with the Oregon Islands and Bandon Marsh National Wildlife Refuges. In addition to assisting US Fish and Wildlife, SEA volunteers also partner with local state parks, the Oregon Institute of Marine Biology, the South Slough National Estuarine Reserve, and the Oregon Audubon Association. In 2019 SEA began a collaborative effort with Oregon and California Audubon, the PEW Foundation and many of our coastal environmental organizations and State agencies to strategize how all of these organizations and agencies can work together with coastal communities to identify and to protect Oregon’s Rocky Shores Habitat – an essential ingredient in the overall health of the world’s marine ecosystem.
We Are SEA!
SEA (Shoreline Education Awareness) is a group of local coastal residents who provide education and awareness regarding the shoreline habitats and the wildlife along the Southern Oregon Coast. SEA provides trained wildlife interpreters to coastal visitors, schools, and civic groups in meeting its primary mission of education. SEA invites you to join our organization by becoming an active member, by respecting our coastal environment and wildlife, or by making a monetary donation.
Mail: PO Box 957, Bandon, OR 97411
Wildlife Interpreter Coordinator: 541-313-6751