EDUCATIONAL AND RESEARCH PROJECTS SUPPORTED THROUGH FUNDING FROM THE CORDELL MARINE SANCTUARY FOUNDATION
Two moorings outfitted with oceanographic instruments are again positioned at Cordell Bank National Marine Sanctuary (CBNMS) for the second year in a row after CBNMS staff worked with Bodega Marine Lab scientists to re-deploy the moorings on May 19, 2015 for the spring through fall seasons. Cordell Marine Sanctuary Foundation again provided funding to CBNMS for the project this year and Danielle Lipski, CBNMS Research Coordinator, worked with Dr. John Largier and Matt Robart at Bodega Marine Lab (BML) to build and instrument the moorings. Low oxygen water naturally occurs in the deep ocean but intrusions of hypoxic (meaning “low oxygen”) water has been found in more shallow waters along the US west coast in recent years. Low dissolved oxygen levels had been recorded along the north central California coast for the first time in 2013 by BML and in 2014 CBNMS and BML worked together to place sensors at Cordell Bank to learn if low oxygen water was present at the bank. The bank is inhabited by a vibrant invertebrate and rockfish community which could be vulnerable to hypoxic conditions. Results from 2014 showed that hypoxic or near-hypoxic conditions were recorded at the buoys for about two weeks in June and July following strong winds and upwelling conditions.
Cordell Bank National Marine Sanctuary (CBNMS) scientists are sampling the pelagic and nearshore ecosystem as part of Applied California Current Ecosystem Studies (ACCESS), a joint project with Gulf of the Farallones National Marine Sanctuary and Point Blue Conservation Science. Cordell Marine Sanctuary Foundation has provided funding support for ACCESS for many years and continues to support this important project.
Whale Spotter Pro App, a smart phone app logs observations of whales. The iOS app allows commercial and recreational ship captains to record real-time sightings of marine mammals and upload them to a common database at WhaleAware.org, using iphones and ipads. Once sightings have been recorded, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) uses this information to warn ship captains that whales may be in their path, and to take precautions to avoid striking and injuring or killing the whales.
Winged Ambassadors: Ocean Literacy Through the Eyes of Albatross, a two day teacher workshop with guest speakers, curriculum materials, and a field trip, helps teachers of grades 6 – 12 learn more about the global issue of ocean trash and the actions their students can take to reduce plastic debris that flows into the sea.
Production of videos to be used in schools and outreach programs.
The San Francisco International Ocean Film Festival, North America’s premier annual film event for ocean-related independent films. The innovative films shown at the festival foster greater understanding of oceanic processes and resource conservation.
Lecture series in Marin and Sonoma Counties to increase public awareness of the Cordell Bank National Marine Sanctuary and the importance of maintaining and protecting this vital ocean ecosystem along our coast.
Research and monitoring of the dynamic physical and biological processes within the Sanctuary. This core task informs our outreach and other educational programs of the Sanctuary and the Foundation.
Cordell Marine Sanctuary Foundation volunteers regularly perform public outreach, recently providing and staffing informational events at the Bodega Bay Fisherman’s Festival and the Bodega Marine Laboratory’s open house.