Tuesday, August 21, 2018

8/21 Sea lettuce, J50, bad air, Trump;s EPA, bird smells, wolf kill, Fish Fest, bird fest, OR stormwater

Sea lettuce [Mandy Lindberg]
Sea Lettuce Ulva fenestrata
The green macroalga widely known as Ulva fenestrata is an important food source for a variety of microorganisms and herbivores, especially certain polychaetes, amphipods, and crabs, along the northeastern Pacific coast. It is often attached to shells, pebbles, rocks, or pieces of wood. Although it may always start out anchored like this, in quiet bays it may float about, except when it has been left behind by a receding tide. Floating specimens tend to grow larger than those that are attached to a substrate. The blades may reach a length of 1 meter and they are often extensively perforated, especially from Oregon northward. (Encyclopedia of Life)

Researchers to try to treat ailing orca J50 for worms
J50, the critically ill orca whale, may have worms and veterinarians want to give her a shot to kill the parasites. She has already received one shot of antibiotics under an emergency care and feeding program led by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. But she only got half a dose because the dart used to give her the shot fell out of her thick skin. Biologists want to try again and this time perhaps use a needle that’s tough enough for elephant hide. The goal also is to give her a shot of wormer. While the parasites she may have are no problem for a healthy animal, an orca as emaciated as J50 is at risk. Lynda Mapes reports. (Seattle Times)

'Unhealthy' air prompts stage 1 burn ban in 4 Western Washington counties
A stage one burn ban goes into effect at 5 p.m. Monday in King, Kitsap, Pierce and Snohomish counties because of unhealthy levels of wildfire smoke. Health officials issued the ban to reduce any additional harm from outdoor burning. Scott Sistek reports. (KOMO) And: Air quality plummets in Metro Vancouver as wildfire smoke blankets South Coast  The wildfire smoke blanketing Metro Vancouver has grown so thick that the air quality health risk hit the highest rating in some areas Monday. According to the B.C. air quality data map, Burnaby, Vancouver, North Vancouver, Coquitlam, Maple Ridge and other parts of northeastern and northwestern Metro Vancouver had a 10+ rating as of 11 a.m. PT. Monday. (CBC)

As Trump Dismantles Clean Air Rules, an Industry Lawyer Delivers for Ex-Clients
As a corporate lawyer, William L. Wehrum worked for the better part of a decade to weaken air pollution rules by fighting the Environmental Protection Agency in court on behalf of chemical manufacturers, refineries, oil drillers and coal-burning power plants. Now, Mr. Wehrum is about to deliver one of the biggest victories yet for his industry clients — this time from inside the Trump administration as the government’s top air pollution official. On Tuesday, President Trump is expected to propose a vast rollback of regulations on emissions from coal plants, including many owned by members of a coal-burning trade association that had retained Mr. Wehrum and his firm as recently as last year to push for the changes. Eric Lipton reports. (NY Times)

Oceanic birds can smell what the ocean is cooking kilometres away, says U.S. research scientist
You know it as the smell of the sea shore, but to wide-ranging oceanic birds with great sniffers, dimethyl sulfide is a sure sign of food ahead. As Gabrielle Nevitt explains, dimethyl sulfide is created when krill consume phytoplankton. And some birds in the order Procellariiformes — albatross, petrel, fulmar — are especially good at detecting dimethyl sulfide, perhaps up to 20 kilometres away. They are called “fishes of the air” because they widely roam the oceans and only come to land to breed. Larry Pynn reports. (Vancouver Sun)

Washington state approves killing of wolves that preyed on cattle in Ferry County 
The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) has approved the killing of members of the Togo wolf pack after the animals preyed on a rancher’s cattle several times in Ferry County, according to an agency news release. The Togo wolves have targeted cattle six times since November, according to the state wildlife agency. Three of those instances took place in the past 30 days, which is frequent enough that the state is allowed to approve lethal action under its 2011 wolf conservation plan. evan Bush reports. (Seattle Times)

Cantwell, Franz address salmon, orcas, wildfires in Port Townsend appearance
The environment took center stage as U.S. Sen. Maria Cantwell and state Commissioner of Public Lands Hilary Franz discussed ocean health, orcas and the wildfires burning across the state at the Jefferson County Democrats’ Fish Feast. Franz was the keynote speaker at the Sunday evening fundraiser at the Jefferson County Fairgrounds, with 300 members of the party attending. Jeannie McMacken reports. (Peninsula Daily News)

Parade marks launch of 27th International Ornithological Congress, 1st Vancouver International Bird Festival
How about starting your week in a bird costume and parading around on stilts? That's just what some Vancouver residents are planning to do to kick off a festival celebrating local birds — and to mark an international bird conference being held in the city.... The parade kicks off a week of activities centred around the world of birds, and marks the 27th International Ornithological Congress, which runs until Aug. 26 at the convention centre. Chad Pawson reports. (CBC)

Nearly white bald eagle seen in Bay View
While bald eagles aren’t an uncommon sight along the shorelines of Padilla Bay or throughout the region, at least one with unusual coloring has been spotted this summer in the Bay View area. U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service staff believe the eagle — which has an almost white, marbled appearance — has genetic mutations that prevent it from developing the brown hues seen on other bald eagles. These types of mostly white eagles, as well as eagles with spots of white, are called leucistic. Kimberly Cauvel reports. (Skagit Valley Herald)

Oregon Settles Lawsuit Over Stormwater Pollution
Oregon’s Department of Environmental Quality has settled a lawsuit that environmental groups filed over the state’s regulation of stormwater pollution. When it rains, water runs over industrial sites and collects toxics like copper, lead and zinc, which then wash into rivers and streams. This kind of pollution has become a major source of contaminants across the country. The settlement adds special protections for rivers and streams that are already too polluted for salmon, drinking water or swimming. Previously, the state treated permits for those waters no differently than permits to discharge into cleaner rivers. Tony Schick reports. (OPB/EarthFix)


Now, your tug weather--
West Entrance U.S. Waters Strait Of Juan De Fuca-  228 AM PDT Tue Aug 21 2018   

TODAY  E wind 5 to 15 kt becoming variable late. Wind waves 2  ft or less. W swell 4 ft at 10 seconds. Smoky. 

TONIGHT  W wind 10 kt or less. Wind waves 1 ft or less. W swell  3 ft at 10 seconds. Smoky.

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