Training With The Washington Sea Grant

As I mentioned in my previous post, although this training with the Washington Sea Grant program on monitoring for the European Green Crab was only a day, I came up early to make sure I’d have a weather window in order to get some b-roll in the can.

For once, I made a smart decision.

FILMING

The weather was a crap shot but luckily I had given myself plenty of leeway.Of the 4 days I was in Port Townsend only two of those allowed me to get outdoors and capture  b-roll. Even on the agreeable days the wind threatened to keep the drone ground, but with a little luck I was able to get some aerial shots.

I also used one of my ‘weather’ days to go into town and speak with the coordinators at the Northwest Maritime Center. They allowed me to scout the classroom so I could check lighting and audio levels.

Afterwards I went into town and got some shots of both Port Townsend, and the center. Then it was just a matter of showing up early and setting up the shots as well as miking the speakers.

Point Wilson Lighthouse

Point Wilson Lighthouse; Fort Worden Historical State Park. Photograph by Steve Weileman (www.xexplore.com)

TRAINING WITH SEA GRANT

The training was incredibly interesting. We learned the history of the European Green Crab (Carcinus maenas)as well as the geographical pattern of the invasive migration here in North America. It turns out in the case of Washington our biggest threat is the established colony of crabs off the southern coast of Vancouver Island. It’s hoped that the deep water of the Strait of Juan de Fuca will hinder the migration south, but it’s not a guarantee. A couple of juveniles have been found in the San Juan Islands.

After the history, we then got down to the nitty gritty of our duties as monitors. I’ll go into more detail in later posts and explain just how to identify the European Green Crab. (Quick sidebar; I just wanted to get the ball rolling as the site has been silent recently. If you’re reading this I think the reason is obvious that I’ve been busy redesigning the site to make it a bit cleaner)

Basically, our duties are three fold.

  1. Set a variety of traps at low tide and check them at the next low tide documenting everything present in the traps.
  2. Spent 20 man-minutes (we work in teams of 3 or 4) searching and documenting all crab molts found.
  3. Take a square meter below the wrack line and document all organics and geographical features.

I’ve been assigned my area of shoreline to monitor just waiting for the rest of the team to be assemble. If you think you might like to participate, and I’d encourage everyone to do so, you can find details here. With the proposed budget cuts from the current federal administration I’d invite all washingtons to show their support

BREAKING NEWS

This just came across my inbox. You can read the full article here.

More invasive green crabs have been found in Washington state’s inland waters, this time at Dungeness Spit near Sequim. A team with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service captured a total of 13 European green crabs in recent weeks as part of the Washington Sea Grant’s crab team detection program.

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