FRIENDS OF THE SOUTHERN OREGON COAST NATIONAL WILDLIFE REFUGES
After 15 years of operation, SEA partnered with the Oregon Coast National Wildlife Refuge (NWR) Complex to serve as a Friends Organization. SEA’s mission is to contribute to the conservation efforts of the Southern Oregon Coast Refuges, Oregon Islands and Bandon Marsh NWRs, through its function as a nonprofit Friends organization providing interpretation and environmental education about the marine environment on the coast. SEA has an office at Bandon Marsh National Wildlife Refuge and provides coastal wildlife interpretation at Simpson Reef near Charleston, Face Rock in Bandon, and Coquille Point of the Oregon Islands National Wildlife Refuge.
Shoreline Education for Awareness directly advances the mission of the National Wildlife Refuge System through its own mission of guiding and supporting interpretive programs on the beach and headlands that are designed to promote and protect Oregon Islands National Wildlife Refuge and its marine wildlife. Interpretive programs help visitors understand the purpose and need for protection, and often educate and redirect violators who trespass into closed areas of the refuge and/or disturb nesting seabirds.
As an important component of USFWS team, SEA volunteers contribute thousands of hours each summer educating visitors about the wonder of the coastal creatures as they mate, give birth, and raise their young. These “wildlife interpreters” also teach visitors about the threats these wonderful creatures face – from the dangers that rising ocean temperatures and human garbage pollution create, to human intrusion into the breeding ground of birds, mammals and crustaceans. The rocks and islands that make up the Oregon Islands National Wildlife Refuge are beautiful to behold and magical to meander through. Visitors often say how much they love these areas. But they often overlook that these fragile places can be “loved to death.”
SEA volunteers seek daily to address human interaction with the shoreline creatures in order to insure that our children and our grandchildren will have the same opportunity that we have to be thrilled by the nature of our coastal wonderland.
- USFWS Summer Interpretation Cancelled Due to the COVID-19 Coronavirus, the USFWS was unable to take on their usual seasonal volunteers to spend the summer providing rocky shores interpretation at Coquille Point and Simpson Reef.
- Bandon Marsh NWR Facility Upgrade Improvements abound at Bandon Marsh NWR! The new Ni-les’tun Marsh Overlook is complete, and the newly constructed office building is receiving final touches. In addition to these improvements, the brand new Myrtlewood Grove Nature Trail is scheduled to open fall of 2020.
- Crook Point Restoration Under Way Crook Point, one of two headlands that are part of Oregon Islands NWR, is being restored to the coastal prairie habitat it once was.
VISIT THE REFUGES
- Experience Oregon Islands NWR Face Rock Overlook, Coquille Point, and Simpson Reef are incredible places to see the magic of Oregon Islands NWR. Bring binoculars or a spotting scope to see the wildlife of Oregon’s coastal islands. SEA and USFWS Volunteers are normally on-site at these locations periodically throughout the year, but due to Covid-19 restrictions, we are unable to provide this service.
- Before you head out to the wonderful world of tidepools, please watch this video below. It will help you to understand both how tough tidepool creatures are as well as how fragile. It’s easy to “love them to death” if we are careless about where we step as well as what we pick up. Watch, learn, and enjoy Oregon’s magical rocky shores!
- Plan a visit to Bandon Marsh NWR It’s home to two tidal marshes on the Coquille River. The refuge provides habitat for several species and is dominated by migratory shorebirds in the spring and fall. Experience the refuge by visiting Bandon Marsh, Ni’les-tun Marsh, or the brand new Myrtlewood Grove Nature Trail.
- Environmental education and interpretation of the Rocky Shores/Oregon Islands Environmental Education and Interpretation are an essential component of the National Wildlife Refuge System’s mission. Organizations like SEA help provide these services to visitors from all over the world. Education and Interpretation give visitors more fulfilling experiences of their public lands and aid in protection of wildlife and critical habitats.
- SOCNWR Interns SEA helps the USFWS hire seasonal interns annually. The Refuge generally has between 1 – 3 interns on staff through the year. These interns are an asset to the Refuge, and fill roles like Biological Technician, Rocky Shores Interpretive Specialist, Volunteer Coordinator, Refuge Operations Specialist and more. If you are interested in learning about internship opportunities, contact OregonCoast@FWS.gov.
OREGON COAST NATIONAL WILDLIFE REFUGE COMPLEX
The Oregon Coast NWR Complex is comprised of six individual National Wildlife Refuges that span the coast of Oregon and support a rich diversity of wildlife habitats including coastal rocks, sea stacks, reefs, and islands; forested and grass-covered headlands; estuaries; and freshwater marshes.
The OCNWRC is headquartered in Newport, OR, and spans 320 miles of the Oregon Coast. Learn more at: https://www.fws.gov/refuge/Oregon_Islands/about/about_the_complex.html.
Visit all the refuges of the Complex and others in the National Wildlife Refuge System using the link below.