Shoreline Education for Awareness, Inc.

More challenges face sea otters on the West Coast

Open the link below in order to read about the impact of warmer ocean temperatures on Sea Otters and other marine life:

Thiamine deficiency: is it killing wildlife?

It is fascinating to read about new discoveries that the scientific community is making. As these occur, the question becomes what to do with what we learn? And are the conclusions we make and the solutions we offer reliably accurate? Here’s an article that demonstrates the thinking and debate about what is generally becoming regarded as an enormous problem in wildlife. Read on and see which way you might choose. Click on this link:

The Aquacultural Revolution

We are hearing more and more about the wonders of aquaculture and how it will be the centerpiece of our solution to the problem of feeding an over-populated planet (estimated to be 9.7 billion by 2050). This article gives us a sobering look into the benefits as well as the dangers it holds. A successful aquaculture industry depends on how wisely and carefully we pursue this path. Can humanity over our history be considered both wise AND careful? Read on for a look at where mankind seems headed.

Humpback whales adopting new strategies for hunting?

Read the following article and be amazed at the intelligence demonstrated by humpback whales off of Baranof Island in Southeast Alaska recently.

Sunflower Stars Now Critically Endangered

With more than 90% of the world’s sunflower starfish gone, it is urgent to do something. Click on the link below to see what is being explored to save the sunflower starfish. Scientists believe “hope is not lost.”

Urchins and Kelp: The need to balance

Throughout the Pacific we are seeing an alarming reduction in the number of kelp forests. The sea star wasting that has been decimating the sea star populations along the US and Canadian West Coast, and the absence of sea otters along much of this same region, has left sea urchins without their main predators and has allowed them to devour many kelp forests.

The Haida Gwaii of British Columbia depend on kelp forests for the health of their waters and on sea urchins for their diet. They have found a way to address the problem in their tribal waters. Click on the link below and learn what they are doing for the sake of their tribal waters and the future of their people.

The Problem is Us

Click on the video below to hear a deeply challenging assessment of the causes of global warming and environmental destruction. It’s sobering. At the same time it is hopeful, because we CAN DO something about it! We just need to have the will and the wisdom.

Oyster Restoration and Ocean Healing

CLICK ON THE LINK BELOW to learn how oyster restoration is being done to rebuild ocean habitat.

Sei Whale Stranding in Bandon

Written by Diane Bilderback

Dave and I are long time Oregon Marine Mammal Stranding Network (OMMSN) volunteers, and when Jim Rice, OMMSN Coordinator, texted us that a large, live whale was near Face Rock, we needed to get there quickly.  From the headland, we spotted the whale to the south.  As we walked down the steps to the beach, we were joined by a Highway Patrolman, also who had been called.  Soon, State Parks Rangers and a NOAA official were joining and erected a rope barrier to help control the large crowd.  However, most people were wearing masks and trying to stay socially distant from others to see this whale. 

The whale was in the surf that was shallow enough so that it could try to swim as the water came in but not deep enough to float its large, long-as-a-school-bus body.  At times, the whale blew, but it was only a small blow of 3 or so feet.  The dark blue-gray upper body was contrasted by the light underside. It would twist to try to push itself out to sea but was not successful.  Once whales come on shore, their large body starts to get crushed under its own weight, and even if they could return to sea, the animal starts to suffer internal injuries making it unlikely to survive.  Unfortunately, the tide had started to turn and as the tide went out, the whale became stranded on the sand.  I got another text from Jim to bring old sheets and towels to place on the whale to keep it wet.  The State Park Rangers, NOAA and Highway Patrol were all helping lug buckets of sea water to keep it moist.  When Jim Rice came, he examined and photographed the whale, sending the photos to other whale experts to determine that it was a Sei Whale.  The whale died around 9:30 PM in the evening.

Sei Whales are found from subtropical to subpolar regions but in deep water and offshore.  They eat krill, squid, and small schooling fish by lunge diving or by skimming the water.  They have baleen as do the Grey Whales that are often seen from shore.  When feeding they open their mouth and swallow a large gulp of water and prey. They use their tongue to press the water through the baleen, leaving the prey to be swallowed.  Along the US Pacific Coast, stranding records from 1950 to present include four Sei Whales, two in California, one in Washington and the first one in Oregon.  All the data collected from our Bandon Sei Whale will further our knowledge about this species.

The next day, veterinarians specializing in whales came to help Jim Rice and others on the necropsy team.  Detailed measurements are taken such as the length of the animal, the width of the fluke and many more. Then small samples of most of the organ systems (lungs, stomach, kidney, etc.) of the animal are taken so that pathologists can determine the cause of death.

This Sei Whale was a juvenile male, 38 feet in length and still not at the adult size of 45 feet.  A whale this size weighs about 10 tons (20,000 pounds). The organ samples will be able to give more information to scientists about this whale’s health as well as add to the knowledge of this species.

Click on link to see photos of the Sei Whale on the beach:

To find more information about the Oregon Marine Mammal Stranding Network and learn how you can help, please visit .

Reason for Hope: Post-Pandemic Possibilities of Promise

We all know that we are watching the world change right before our eyes. The question is: will the changes be constructive or destructive? Well, here’s an example of an industry creating a new paradigm that might lead to wonderful innovations for not only sustainable but for regenerative commerce. I am always looking for reasons to be optimistic in the midst of chaos and catastrophe, and here is a great reason to be optimistic. Read on below!!