Beached Bird Survey Training

January 24, 2016 - 11:00 AM - 5:00 PM
OSU Sea Grant Field Station
444 Jackson St
Port Orford, OR

Photo of women recording beached bird data on the beach.
Conducting the beached bird survey. Photo courtesy of COASST.
CoastWatch collaborates with the Coastal Observation and Seabird Survey Team (COASST) to conduct the beached bird survey at many sites on the Oregon coast.  The survey offers an opportunity to participate in genuine citizen science, producing data of use to scientists, while making a difference for the environment.

COASST and CoastWatch are sponsoring two training sessions this month. The second one will be held Sunday, Jan. 24, 11 a.m.-5 p.m., OSU Sea Grant Field Station, 444 Jackson St., Port Orford.

Current COASST volunteers who would like a refresher are encouraged to join the training sessions at 2 p.m.

Photo of COASST Volunteer Coordinator Erika Frost.
COASST Volunteer Coordinator Erika Frost.
The trainer will be Erika Frost, COASST’s volunteer coordinator since February, 2014.  She has a degree in Fisheries, Wildlife and Conservation Biology from the University of Minnesota, and has worked as an educator for zoos, nature centers, aquariums and non-profits around the U.S.

COASST is a citizen science project dedicated to involving volunteers in the collection of high quality data on the status of coastal beaches and trends of seabirds. The goal is to assist government agencies and other organizations in making informed management and conservation decisions, and to promote proactive citizen involvement and action. This meshes with CoastWatch’s mission to engage citizens in monitoring the shoreline. We have collaborated with COASST for more than 15 years now.

COASST volunteers systematically count and identify bird carcasses that wash ashore along ocean beaches from northern California to Alaska. Volunteers need no experience with birds, just a commitment to survey a specific beach (about ¾ mile) each month.  Many CoastWatchers adopt the mile where their beached bird survey site is located, but others join teams monitoring sites on other miles.

There is no charge to attend a training, but plan to provide a $20 refundable deposit if you would like to take home a COASST volunteer kit complete with a COASST Beached Birds field guide (which we can attest is excellent). Training activities take place indoors.

If you plan to attend, it would help with planning the event if you could RSVP to [email protected] or (206) 221-6893.  CoastWatch Volunteer Coordinator Fawn Custer can also provide more information about the survey:  (541) 270-0027, [email protected].