Despite Record Snowfall A Successful Beach Survey

Tides and weather are the keys to whether we have can conduct a successful bird survey. Tides are predictable; the weather has been anything but this year.

beach survey

Any trip to the Washington coast is worth the time it takes to get out there. For Theresa and I that’s about a 3.5-hour drive one way. There’s a beauty here despite the weather, rain or shine. Completing a beach survey is the cherry on top.

But when the goal is to conduct a beach cast bird survey for COASST and that same weather prevents you from completing the mission then a bit of frustration does creep in. Especially when it’s back to back mission scrubs. 

First, we had to deal with the wind producing storm surges that were driving the waves into the log completely covering our beach. This last time we were threatened with failure with the record snowfall we were experiencing. 

Lucky for us we had enough of a thaw window that cleared the roads allowing us to get out to our staging ground in La Push.  Once on the trail, the amount of snow in the woods was surprising, but it wasn’t enough to stop us from reaching our beach.

And finally, we were able to complete and document a survey for this winter. 

member of the following

We are the learned society for geography and geographers.
as-seal-gr
Working to provide opportunities for outdoor enthusiasts to make a difference as they play in the outdoors.
coasst-logo
Working to translate long-term monitoring into effective marine conservation solutions.
Sea Grant Washington
Provide integrated research, communication, and education to coastal communities that lead to the responsible use of the nation’s oceans.
Latest Tweets
Essex Explorers Essex Explorers @xexplore I just published an article on my latest citizen-science project. Give it a read and let me know your thoughts. | "… https://t.co/Lr1FV4iquo 8 hours ago
Essex Explorers Essex Explorers @xexplore Dozens of Pilot Whales Washed Up on Georgia Beach, and Beachgoers Came to the Rescue - https://t.co/zqx0MGJCXF 12 hours ago
Essex Explorers Essex Explorers @xexplore A crumbling wall of what once was a thriving coal community named Melmont deep in the Carbon River Canyon. Only a h… https://t.co/p2wQF2Ju6L 2 days ago
Essex Explorers Essex Explorers @xexplore This Fish Can Hold Its Breath | Hakai Magazine https://t.co/3KcH9zksnp https://t.co/E4q2DpeyWg 2 days ago
Essex Explorers Essex Explorers @xexplore Tiny Fighting Worms Make One of the Loudest Sounds in the Ocean https://t.co/P5x0rdWw7Q https://t.co/OTL6KkNMRC 2 days ago
Essex Explorers Essex Explorers @xexplore Making our way up the Carbon River banks toward the Melton Ghost Town. We had such good weather for exploring this… https://t.co/jDT9XIClbC 2 days ago

advertisement

blowdown
Just some of the trees damage from this winters high winds and heavy snow falls.
giants graveyard
Looking for beach cast birds with the impressive Gaints Graveyard in the backgound.

trail cameras

Unrelated to the bird survey and more of a pet project of my own is I set out some trail camera’s to capture whatever predator is leaving scat on the trail. I suspect it’s a cougar (Puma concolor), possibly a bobcat (Lynx rufus) or maybe even a coyote (Canis latrans). I’m not an expert but it’s certainly a meat eater as I’m finding fur in the scat. 

We had placed two trail-cameras on the path and were able to recover them. Earlier deployments fo the trail camera had resulted in Roosevelt Elk and deer photographed. 

I’ll try repositioning them to a better location next month and with any luck will capture our predator. I sure he’s still out there as I found scat fresh enough this time that I could actually smell it.

Please share this:

More to explore

Sunset on Quillayute River during Halibut opener
Science

Sun and Halibut at Toleak Beach

Once again we were blessed with some outstanding weather and we had the bonus of watching the opening of Pacific Halibut and all the serious anglers heading out beyond James Island.

Read More »
Science

First Beach Cast Bird Found

I really don’t want to think about the number of miles or the total elevation lost and gained that were traveled to find our first bird but it finally paid off with the discovery of our first bird (and second) to document for the volunteer COASST program.

Read More »
Science

First Attempted Survey at Toleak Beach

As I was crawling through the rain slick log jam, I thought, “This can’t be the rain I’m feeling, it can’t be raining that hard, the surf must be dumping on the logs”! Well, it was both. And that was in direct competition with all the noise. This time the battle was between the wind in the tree tops and the dumping surf. Was I on Toleak Beach or an alien world.?

Read More »

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

×
×

Cart