Climate Whiplash: Wild Swings in Extreme Weather Are on the Rise

Yale Environment 360 – From 2011 to 2016, California experienced five years of extreme drought, during which numerous high temperature records were broken. These hot, dry years were followed by the extremely wet winter of 2016 -2017, when, from October to March, an average of 31 inches of rain fell across the state, the second highest winter rainfall on record. All that rain meant a Read More…

Bigger doesn’t mean better for hatchery-released salmon

Science Daily – Fish permeate the culture of the Pacific Northwest (PNW). In particular, the iconic salmon has been an important part of the region for thousands of years, from ancient Native American trade routes and legends to modern fishing and sporting. In the area of the Salish Sea -- inland waterways including Puget Sound, the Strait of Georgia, and the Strait of Juan de Fuca -- the Read More…

Shaping plans for single Delta tunnel

The Press – As plans for a single tunnel in the Delta take shape, a new committee has been created to inform planners of the Delta Conveyance Project’s (DCP) expected impacts across a broad range of interests. The appointed members of the Stakeholder Engagement Committee (SEC) were announced last month by the board of the Delta Conveyance Design and Construction Authority (DCA), and Read More…

The Ecological Cost of Mosquito Net Fishing

Modern Farmer – Unable to afford fishing nets, fishermen in poor countries have been using anti-malaria mosquito nets to catch fish and feed their families. This practice has alarmed researchers who worry the misuse of the nets will pose risks to health, devastate ecosystems and threaten food security. Until now, experts have only been able to speculate about the impacts this kind of Read More…

Linking estuary habitats and building capacity to adapt to rising seas

Maven's Notebook – A living shoreline is a shoreline protection alternative that relies on the strategic placement of plants, stone, sand fill, and other structural and organic materials to protect the shoreline.  A living shoreline is an alternative to ‘hard’ shoreline stabilization methods like rip rap or seawalls, and can provide numerous benefits such as nutrient pollution Read More…

Tuna carbon ratios reveal shift in food web

Science Daily – The ratio of carbon isotopes in three common species of tuna has changed substantially since 2000, suggesting major shifts are taking place in phytoplankton populations that form the base of the ocean's food web, a new international study finds. "The change we observed in tuna, which are near the top of the marine food web, reflects profound changes in physiology or Read More…

Where plastic outnumbers fish by seven to one

BBC News – Plastic is building up in the areas of the ocean where fish feed and grow, according to research. A study found bits of plastic outnumber baby fish by seven to one in nursery waters off Hawaii. It appears that the same ocean processes that concentrate prey for juvenile fish also accumulate floating plastics. There is growing evidence that plastic is being ingested by marine life, Read More…

The Island That Could – How Ecotourism Is Shaping An Isolated…

Forbes – The breathtakingly tranquil waters of Anaa, one of many French Polynesian isles that dot the South Pacific, belie the island’s turbulent past. Most recently, a 1983 hurricane devastated the coral-fringed atoll and its lavish supply of coconut trees that gifted the residents their primary source of income. Despite rebuilding their town and regrowing the trees, the population Read More…

A Silicon Valley Disruption for Birds That Gorge on Endangered Fish

The New York Times – If you took a short kayak trip a few years ago to tiny islands nested in former salt ponds near Silicon Valley, you would have found plastic bird decoys all over. With their snowy white bodies, black crowns and sharp red bills, the decoys lookedlike real Caspian terns, a graceful migratory bird the size of a large crow. The goal of those doppelgängers was to lure terns Read More…

USFWS Regional Director Paul Souza explains the biological opinions

Maven's Notebook – Paul Souza is the Regional Director of the Pacific Southwest division of the US Fish and Wildlife Service, which covers California, Nevada, and the part of Oregon that includes the Klamath Basin.  At the November meeting of Metropolitan Water District’s Water Planning and Stewardship Committee, Mr. Souza gave a presentation on the recently released biological opinions Read More…