NEXT SURVEY: April 22nd at 11:45am.
To sign up, please use the message box at the bottom of this page, and include your name, the number of people in your group, and mention the sea star survey. (don't worry about choosing a date on the calendar above)
We will be meeting at Jaycee Park in Willow Point. Here is the link to the location on Google Maps https://goo.gl/maps/pYk1ybyjnC2PSZvF7, as the park is not well marked. Please note that the parking lot at Jaycee Park is small and you may need to park across the street at the Adventure Hobby Craft store parking lot.
What is a Sea Star Survey? A Sea Star Survey is an opportunity to check the health, estimate the population size and measure the size of the sea stars on the Willow Point Reef.
Why are we doing this? In 2013 there was an outbreak of sea star wasting disease. This is a disease that causes lesions on the body of the sea stars and deterioration of soft tissues. After this outbreak the populations of sea stars on the Pacific northwest coast declined sharply and populations are still not yet recovered in many places. The cause of sea star wasting disease is still poorly understood, although gathering information is the first step to solving this issue. For more information about sea star wasting disease and the protocol we will be following copy please click on the following blue link: https://marine.ucsc.edu/data-products/sea-star-wasting/
How do I prepare for the survey? The Discovery Passage Aquarium will provide all materials needed to survey the sea stars. During the survey you will be assigned a site on the reef and asked to count all of the sea stars at your site, assess their health based on the pictures of healthy, mildly diseased, and severely diseased sea stars, and measure the radius of the sea star (from the middle of the body to the longest arm). Please note that counting sea stars requires crouching down and looking under rocks.
If you require any accommodations during the event, or if you have any further questions about the Sea Star Surveys please email email@example.com or use the messaging system below.