Date: May 9, 2013
Tonight’s Location: Homer, AK
Weather: mostly cloudy, a little sun late
Temperature: start 41º
Wildlife count: Moose, Sea Otters
Year List: 214
Birds: Black-bellied Plover, Northern Shoveler, Green-winged Teal, Pacific Golden-Plover, Whimbrel, Dunlin, Scaup, Greater Yellowlegs, Sandhill Cranes, Short-billed Dowitcher, Western Sandpipers, Northern Pintail,
I was cleaning up the dishes this morning, when I happened to look out our back window to see an amazing sight. The hotel that sits behind us across a tiny gravel parking lot is undergoing renovation, with several men working all day removing parts of the building. THIS morning, our friendly neighborhood moose found some delicious, tender shrubs to nibble for its breakfast – just out our back window. This moose stuff is really getting goofy!
After a good hot shower – in our OWN shower, we picked up our registration for the festival and attended several lectures at the Visitor’s Center. One was on Marine Debris, discussion the Pacific Gyre, an area of marine debris in the Pacific Ocean that is twice the size of Texas. Most of it is plastic, which has been physically broken down into ½ to 1” pieces. The beaches in Oregon were covered with it! Many formerly pristine beaches in Hawaii are covered with trash – it truly is an issue. After the programs, we worked the Mud Bay overlook during the afternoon high tide, talking to over 100 guests and sharing scopes – it was good fun.
The evening education and meal was Land’s End clam chowder at the Center for Alaska Coastal Studies. The video shared was on the changing hydrology of upper Hudson Bay, showing how fresh water dumped into the bay changed the condition of sea ice, which is changing water flow around the St. Lawrence River. Not only were birds and polar bears dying, but continued disruption could change the entire flow of water in the earth’s oceans. It was very interesting. The fresh water was coming from reservoirs around New York City.