Volunteers needed to collect data on beaches

Volunteers are needed for the Coastal Observation and Seabird Survey Team from 10:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. March 25.

There will be free training at the Kitsap Regional Library Kingston branch, 26159 Dulay Road NE.

COASST participants collect data on beach-cast carcasses of marine birds and marine debris on a monthly basis to establish the baseline pattern of beached bird mortality and debris deposition on North Pacific beaches. Through an interactive, hands-on workshop, trainees will become acquainted with COASST survey protocols, learn about seabirds that live in their area, and learn about the effects of marine debris on sea life.

The training provides participants with the tools to monitor for potential changes in the marine environment and promote stewardship of local marine resources. COASST is a citizen science project of the University of Washington in partnership with state, tribal and federal agencies, environmental organizations, and community groups. Currently, nearly 1,000 participants survey beaches in Washington, Oregon, California and Alaska.

There will be a short break during training for lunch, so be sure to bring one. Beach surveys are best done in groups of two or more, so come with a survey partner or plan to join a team. Participants need no prior experience with scientific data collection, just a commitment to survey a specific beach at least once a month.

For details and to reserve your training spot, call COASST at 206-221-6893, email coasst@uw.edu or check out coasst.org.