CoastWatching Moves Online

CoastWatchers Dave and Diane Bilderback conducting a beached bird survey.

The coronavirus crisis poses particular difficulties for a program like CoastWatch, which brings people together for educational events and projects on the shore, while encouraging volunteers to monitor a shoreline which is currently closed to many.

But the program has now pivoted to an online environment by inaugurating a new series of webinars.  We can’t hold in-person training sessions and field trips, but we can put the stay-at-home period to good use by expanding our knowledge of the coast, CoastWatch, and citizen science.  Volunteer Coordinator Jesse Jones has already kicked things off with several webinars, and we’re rapidly familiarizing ourselves with this new mode of conveying information about the Oregon shore.

These live webinars offer a chance to learn about current citizen science opportunities on the coast, in preparation for the day when beach restrictions are lifted.  Our goals are to keep people informed about what is happening on the shoreline at present, while providing training opportunities and background information about CoastWatch and citizen science as we look forward to the time when we can participate in hands-on stewardship again.  Everyone is invited; there is no charge for any of these activities:

Monday, May 18, 11 a.m.: CoastWatch Volunteer Coordinator Jesse Jones will lead a casual conversation among volunteers, with some Q&A and some Show and Tell.  Non-CoastWatchers are welcome to sit in.

Wednesday, May 20, 6 p.m.., the webinar will feature Megan Ponder of the Peak Plastic Foundation.

Tuesday, May 26, 11 a.m., a survey of the King Tides Project with Meg Reed of the Coastal Management Program.

Wednesday, May 27, 6 p.m., we wrap up our May series "celebrating" marine debris and our efforts to monitor and clean it up with Ryan Parker, a State Parks ranger and active ally in marine debris monitoring.

Monday, June 1, 11 a.m., Fawn Custer, our former volunteer coordinator and now CoastWatch citizen science trainer, will be featured in a webinar on tidepools, especially designed for those educating about them.

Details on all these events can be found in separate listings in "CoastWatch Events."

To participate in these and future webinars, contact Jesse at [email protected].  She will send you an invitation to join the event via Zoom (you don’t need to have a Zoom account to join the webinar). Most will take place on Mondays at 11 am and Wednesday evenings at 6, but watch for exceptions, such as Tuesday, May 26.

Future webinars will focus on the upcoming campaign for rocky habitat protection, and the new citizen science survey for invasive beachgrass, which was about to launch when the virus shutdown hit and will shortly gear up again.

For information on all of these online events, or to register, contact Jesse Jones at (503) 989-7244, [email protected].