Event Title

Monitoring Salish Sea bull kelp (Nereocystis luetkeana) via kayak surveys

Streaming Media

Presentation Abstract

Conspicuous declines in the abundance of bull kelp (Nereocystis luetkeana), the most common canopy-forming species in Puget Sound, have been observed in many areas. The cause is likely a number of factors, including storm water impacts, sedimentation, and competitive interactions, yet little information on abundance, or changes over time in kelp distribution has been available in the Salish Sea. To document and increase attention to changes in kelp populations around the region the Northwest Straits Initiative formed a Salish Sea International Kelp Alliance and developed a scientifically-driven monitoring protocol. Citizen scientists of the Northwest Straits Marine Resources Committees then applied the protocol to delineate kelp beds via kayak over the summers of 2015-2019. The protocol has now been added to the Washington State Puget Sound Estuarine Monitoring Program PSEMP Nearshore Monitoring Toolbox Similar kayak-based protocols are used by citizen science groups in the Gulf Islands of British Columbia, Samish Indian Nation, and Washington Department of Natural Resources (WDNR). This presentation provides a summary of results on changes in extent, water temperature, and species associations observed over the 5 years of sampling. To date, more than 300 Bull kelp kayak surveys, at 42 sites, have been acquired in 7 counties of the Northwest Straits over 5 summers. Data are available from the Northwest Straits online mapping application SoundIQ linked to interactive maps, data, photos and summary results in Storymap format (https://maps.cob.org/geviewer/Html5Viewer/Index.html?viewer=SoundIQ). Over 5 years a majority of the beds have remained stable, with seasonal variability. The only documented declines and losses of kelp beds have been along the urbanized shoreline of Snohomish County.

Session Title

Session 2.1A: Kelp: Stressors, Trends, and Value (Part I)

Conference Track

Kelp & Seagrass

Conference Name

Salish Sea Ecosystem Conference (2020 : Online)

Document Type

Event

SSEC Identifier

2020_abstractID_5514

Start Date

22-4-2020 10:30 AM

End Date

22-4-2020 12:00 PM

Geographic Coverage

Salish Sea (B.C. and Wash.)

Rights

Copying of this document in whole or in part is allowable only for scholarly purposes. It is understood, however, that any copying or publication of this document for commercial purposes, or for financial gain, shall not be allowed without the author's written permission.

Language

English

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Apr 22nd, 10:30 AM Apr 22nd, 12:00 PM

Monitoring Salish Sea bull kelp (Nereocystis luetkeana) via kayak surveys

Conspicuous declines in the abundance of bull kelp (Nereocystis luetkeana), the most common canopy-forming species in Puget Sound, have been observed in many areas. The cause is likely a number of factors, including storm water impacts, sedimentation, and competitive interactions, yet little information on abundance, or changes over time in kelp distribution has been available in the Salish Sea. To document and increase attention to changes in kelp populations around the region the Northwest Straits Initiative formed a Salish Sea International Kelp Alliance and developed a scientifically-driven monitoring protocol. Citizen scientists of the Northwest Straits Marine Resources Committees then applied the protocol to delineate kelp beds via kayak over the summers of 2015-2019. The protocol has now been added to the Washington State Puget Sound Estuarine Monitoring Program PSEMP Nearshore Monitoring Toolbox Similar kayak-based protocols are used by citizen science groups in the Gulf Islands of British Columbia, Samish Indian Nation, and Washington Department of Natural Resources (WDNR). This presentation provides a summary of results on changes in extent, water temperature, and species associations observed over the 5 years of sampling. To date, more than 300 Bull kelp kayak surveys, at 42 sites, have been acquired in 7 counties of the Northwest Straits over 5 summers. Data are available from the Northwest Straits online mapping application SoundIQ linked to interactive maps, data, photos and summary results in Storymap format (https://maps.cob.org/geviewer/Html5Viewer/Index.html?viewer=SoundIQ). Over 5 years a majority of the beds have remained stable, with seasonal variability. The only documented declines and losses of kelp beds have been along the urbanized shoreline of Snohomish County.