Welcome to Friday Harbor Now
Hi! Welcome to Friday Harbor Now. Events posted on this page are archived as soon as they are over, so there is room for current events and news. If you missed something, you can find it on the Search page. And for even more information and photos you can follow us on Facebook, we are on there as FRIDAY HARBOR. Thanks for visiting, and have a great day!
Town of Friday Harbor Seeks Artists’ Proposals for Park Bench Sculptures
Town of Friday Harbor Press Release: The Town of Friday Harbor is accepting proposals for a park bench sculpture project sponsored by the Friday Harbor Arts Commission (FHAC). The artwork is to be located at, on, or in association with an existing park bench at one of three locations on Spring Street. The selected artwork will be available for sale while on display. Proposals will be accepted until September 30, 2016.
The proposal application states that the artwork is intended to add beauty and interest to a park bench and the downtown core, and to provide an opportunity for local or area artists to display their work in a public venue. The sites have been selected by the FHAC based on their high visibility by vehicle and pedestrian traffic. Additional sites may be selected in the future.
According to the published FHAC guidelines, the art selection process will include forming a sub-committee of Commissioners and community representatives who will review the submissions and present selected proposals to the public for comment at an open forum. “The FHAC continues to demonstrate our commitment to include the community in the public art selection process,” said Commissioner Diane Martindale. She explained that the commission wants all interested citizens to voice their opinions and share in the excitement of bringing more art into the town. Continued here...
Stream Corridor and Salmon Spawning Habitat Protected
Press Release from the San Juan County Land Bank: The San Juan County Land Bank recently acquired 24 acres on the lower reaches of Cascade Creek near Olga on Orcas Island. Washington State Salmon Recovery Funds made the purchase possible, ensuring the preservation of a unique 2,100’ stretch of riparian corridor with adjacent upland forest.
“Coho and chum salmon utilize the lower 300 feet of the Creek for spawning and Chinook juveniles forage there as well,” explains Land Bank Director, Lincoln Bormann. “It is arguably the most important freshwater salmon habitat in the islands at this time, and we are very pleased to play a role in protecting such a significant resource for the people of San Juan County.”
The Cascade Creek watershed originates at the top of Mt. Constitution and includes Mountain Lake in Moran State Park. Conservation of this property builds on Washington Water Trust’s and other partners' efforts to secure adequate year-round water flow to the Creek and salmon recovery funding to rebuild Buck Bay bridge to allow passage for salmon. Continued here...
After two months of intensive care at the Wolf Hollow Wildlife Rehabilitation Center in Friday Harbor, this female Bald Eagle is flying free again. She was first spotted in May by residents of the False Bay area of San Juan Island dragging a heavy steel leg hold trap on one of her talons. The eagle was soon caught by Wolf Hollow staff so they could remove the trap and perform an exam to assess injuries. She was thin and weak, and her tail feathers were extremely dirty and broken.
After the trap was removed, it was clear that the jaws of the trap had smashed the bone in the middle toe of her left foot. The surrounding tissue was also dead. Dr. Susan Besel, DVM, in Friday Harbor removed the damaged section of the toe and the eagle returned to recover at Wolf Hollow. Skilled rehabilitation staff carefully monitored and cared for her during the next two months to help her regain her strength.
Now fully recovered, she was released back into the wild this morning near Pile Point on San Juan Island. After an initial short flight and a few moments of rest, the eagle finally flew away, soaring high and disappearing into the foggy sky toward False Bay. Continued here...
Washington Boaters Reminded to Clean, Drain, Dry Boats to Stop Invasive Species
Press Release from Susan Zemek, Recreation & Conservation Department: OLYMPIA – As summer weather heats up in Washington and boaters prepare for more adventures on the water, the Washington Invasive Species Council would like you to remember: Clean. Drain. Dry.
Invasive species are non-native animals, plants, microorganisms and pathogens that can out-compete or prey on Washington’s existing wildlife, harming the environment, human health and businesses. They come to Washington on car tires, on boat hulls and motors, on hikers’ boots, by wind and sea and many other ways. Some of the worst live in the water.
“There are many ways that we accidentally introduce and move invasive species from one waterway to another,” said Justin Bush, executive coordinator of the Washington State Invasive Species Council. “The best way to prevent introductions is to remember the mantra ‘Clean-Drain-Dry.’ Continued here...
Pet of the Week
Press Release from the Ahhh, pardon me good sirs and madams….would you care to engage in a delightful pastime in which you toss a round object and I run off and fetch it and return it to you….for recreation and merriment? If so, please contact me here at the Animal Shelter in Friday Harbor. I think we’ll have a cracking good time. My name is Max and I patiently await your arrival. Cheerio.
Letter to The Editor - Vote Yes EMSLetter from “Vote Yes for SJI EMS 2016” Levy Committee: In August 2016, voters will be asked to vote on a replacement levy for San Juan Island Emergency Medical Services (SJIEMS). This measure supports SJIEMS - NOT hospital services at Peace Island Medical Center. The current levy expires on December 31, 2016, after which there will be no more funding for SJIEMS, unless voters approve a levy to continue funding this agency.
SJIEMS provides emergency care to everyone, regardless of their ability to pay. Core services include Advanced Life Support (ALS) by paramedics, Basic Life Support (BLS) by community Emergency Medical Technicians (EMTs) and ongoing community education programs that are supported by grants.
The proposed levy of 50 cents per $1000 assessed property value ($100 per year for a $200,000 property) would sustain these key services and begin to fund replacement of aging ambulances and equipment. Continued here...
San Juan Summer Art Festival 2016
Every Friday from August 5 through August 26, 3:00 - 10:00 p.m. Brickworks 150 Nichols Street, Friday Harbor. The first annual San Juan Summer Arts Festival kicks off August 5th and continues every Friday in August.
The Festival features artists, food vendors, and musicians from San Juan County and the surrounding area. Featuring both a Beer Garden and larger musical acts in the evening, the Festival provides locals and visitors with a chance to experience the artistic and musical talent of the islands during some of the region’s best summer weather.
The Festival is sponsored by the San Juan County Arts Council (SJCAC) and individual contributors from the area.
For more information call Claire Wright: 505-702-6796.
How can Islanders save 77 Million Gallons of Water this Year?
By Lauren Platman, FRIENDS of the San Juans: With summer underway, some islanders are already feeling the heat-and the drought. Some wells are already being starved of fresh water, which makes the rainy autumn season seem a long way off. As climate change affects our region, including our water tables, adopting climate resilient strategies for a sustainable future is critical. Islanders can do their part by conserving resources from water, to food, to energy. This April many islanders did just that, joining Friends in doing “Just One” earth friendly activity a day, to see how making simple changes can add up to significant resource conservation.Over 50 islanders, including students, took on the Earth Month challenge in April to help make the San Juan Islands a healthy, resilient, and thriving community. Citizens tracked their actions, and Friends quantified the results. By doing things like walking instead of driving, taking shorter showers, shopping locally, replacing red meat with vegetables or chicken, and unplugging electrical strips when not in use, participants led the way in making our Island community more sustainable. Continued here...
"A River of Migration" Installation by Gu Xiong at SJIMA
Press Release from the San Juans Islands Museum of Art: Comparing his own migration with that of the salmon, Chinese Canadian multi-media artist Gu Xiong will install “A River of Migration” in the San Juan Islands Museum of Art’s (SJIMA) Atrium Gallery.
Installation: August 1 to August 5. The community is invited to observe. Exhibition opens Saturday, August 6 and closes Monday, November 28, 2016.
Continuing SJIMA’s Art as a Voice series, Gu Xiong will give a lecture / multimedia presentation "A River of Migration", August 3, 7:30 PM at the San Juan Community Theatre in Friday Harbor.“My mixed-media installation ‘A River of Migration’ focuses on the rich symbolism embodied in socks and salmon, expressing my spiritual rebirth. When I saw the salmon spawning in the river and streams in the Fraser Valley, I was really moved by their life. I feel a deep connection between their experience and my own. Continued here...
2016 San Juan County Fair starts August 17th
Press Release from San Juan County Fairgrounds: The Fair is getting near! Planning is well underway with vendors, entertainers, and exhibitors are excited to showcase at the Fairgrounds August 17th through the 20th (Wednesday-Saturday). This year’s Fair theme is “Barn and Raised in the Islands” with beautiful poster art by the talented Jill Bliss of San Juan Island.
Hey kids (and parents!)--Thanks again to a very generous anonymous donor, all youth exhibitors, age 5 through 16, will get a FREE season pass just for entering something! You've got plenty of time to fine-tune your creative project before entry day August 16th. Check out the online premium book on the Fair website San Juan County Fairgrounds OR visit your local library starting next week for tags, entry forms, and peruse the reference copy on hand for entry guidelines.
Get Involved! If you’re thinking about getting a VENDOR BOOTH space for your business, your handmade crafts, or your organization, please sign up by visiting our website—Now’s the time!!! The Main Building has sold out, but there are outdoor spaces, and a couple one-day booth spaces left in the Main Building. Continued here...
Letter to The Editor from Frank M. Penwell Running for County Council Position 1
Letter from Frank M. Penwell: I am running for County Council Position 1. I am best known for my integrity, charitable activities, and for starting Community Treasures. I do not support polluting our County rural roads with political signs, so I invite you to visit my website to review my platform and leadership experiences over the last 40 years. www.penwell4council.com
If anyone, or any group, would like a private meeting to better understand the advisors plan, the fairness policies, and the Essential Public Facilities issues that I am promoting, please give me a call at 378-6473. Community Treasures and Take it or Leave sites need to become “conforming” entities, so they can become permanent community facilities. Currently they are non-conforming, meaning they are to be eliminated over time. Fairness policies need to be written, due to the County’s history of not treating citizens and organizations equally, and not protecting employees and whistleblowers effectively. Continued here...
NOAA Killer Whale Patrols Begin in San Juan Islands
Press Release from the NOAA: NOAA’s Office of Law Enforcement (OLE) will soon begin seasonal summer patrols in Haro Strait around Washington’s San Juan Islands. Officers will be enforcing special Federal regulations designed to protect endangered Southern Resident killer whales by keeping boat traffic at a safe distance from the whales.
This is the sixth year implementing NOAA Fisheries’ regulations that require whale watching vessels and most other vessels to remain at least 200 yards away from the killer whales and to keep their path clear so they are protected from disturbance by boat traffic. NOAA Fisheries identified vessel traffic noise as one of three key threats to the whales. This year the Agency is reviewing how effective the regulations have been at protecting the whales.
Research has found that these endangered killer whales spend more time traveling and less time foraging when vessels, including small craft such as kayaks, are present, according to NOAA Fisheries’ 10-year report on the Southern Residents. These whales also change their behavior by increasing their activity at the surface, including swimming in more erratic patterns, when vessels are close. Continued here...
2016 Night Music Summer Concert Series
The 2016 Night Music Summer Concert Series debuts with Friday Harbor Chamber Music Festival Thursday, June 30th @ 7:30 in the Gubelman Theatre at the San Juan Community Theatre. In this popular concert series, a variety of San Juan Island friends share their musical talents! Special chocolate desserts, wine and beer will be available for purchase in the adjacent Steele Memorial Garden. More here...
All tickets $12. Festival seating. Thursdays, June 30 through August 4 & Wednesday, August 10.Buy tickets HERE.
JUNE 30 FH Chamber Music Festival Lets Its Hair Down
JULY 7 Palace Guard * Ian Boulton * Steve Dyer
JULY 14 Daniel Finn * Adam Burrows
JULY 21 Summer Melodious Notes
JULY 28 Bryan Leighton * John Bellows * Glenn Hendrick
AUGUST 4 Jackie Altier Roth * Dubious Brothers (Keith Busha and Steve Keyes)
AUGUST 10 Island Women: Cynthia Burke * Laura Chorba * Debbie Nash Strasser * Kira Sable * Susan Williams
Music in The Park Summer Concert Series 2016
July 1 – September 4 – Summer Concert Series “”. This is the sixteenth year the Port of Friday Harbor has hosted this great music event at the Port's . Enjoy free music concerts on Friday evenings at 5:00 p.m. and Sundays at 2:00 p.m.
Bring a picnic, relax and listen to local and regional music as you gaze out at the harbor, watching ferries, boats and seaplanes come and go. Sponsored by the Port of Friday Harbor. Check the schedule here for performers...
Firewise Communities Benefit From Grant
Press Release from San Juan Island Fire & Rescue: The Firewise Communities program sponsored by San Juan Island Fire & Rescue has been awarded a grant by the Washington Department of Natural Resources (WA DNR) to assist with fuel reduction in organized communities.
The new grant from WA DNR will pay the Firewise Community’s share of the chipper rental making it free to a Firewise Community between now, June 21, 2016, and the end of July.
In the past the San Juan Island Fire & Rescue and Firewise Communities have partnered to share the cost of making a chipper available, with the SJIF&R paying one half of the rental fee and the Firewise Community the other half. SJIF&R is committed to make this program available through the fall. The “no cost” opportunity will run through July. Continued here...
Water Transmission Line Replacement Project Update
Location(s) of work:
The work area is currently on Wold Road between the Water Treatment Plant and the Intersection of San Juan County Road. The work area will continue along San Juan County Road heading east to approx. Wood Duck Lane. Continued here...
Ham Radio Operators Recognized By County Council
Press Release: Friday Harbor, WA – On Tuesday June 7th, the San Juan County Amateur Radio Society (SJCARS) was recognized by the County Council for their service to the island community. The recognition stated: “From phone outages, to regular drills, to preparing for catastrophic events, the amateur radio community is a tremendous resource. We gratefully acknowledge the important contribution to our community that your expertise, time, energy and enthusiasm provide to help meet a vital public need”.
While SJCARS President Jim Hooper K9QJS was representing the group at the Council meeting, other members were busy with the exact activates which gained them the recognition. On Tuesday morning The Cascadia Rising statewide earthquake exercise kicked off at 9 AM and the Hams were soon in action. The radio operators requested the delivery of emergency medical supplies to the islands through the Snohomish County Emergency Coordination Center. The Hams later tracked the progress of the National Guard helicopter making the deliveries to Eastsound and Friday Harbor. Continued here...
APSFH Volunteer of the Month
Press Release from the The Animal Protection Society of Friday Harbor has announced Mike Halette has been named Volunteer of the Month. Mike is regular visitor to the shelter where he walks dogs, visits with cats and helps out with odd jobs around the facility. Mike can always be counted on to help out at events and fundraisers, too. On behalf of the staff and board of directors at APS-FH, Thanks very much, Mike!
Volunteers like Mike make a huge difference in the lives of shelter animals and we appreciate their time and compassion so much! If you’d like to join the volunteer team at the animal shelter, contact Stephanie Zamora at 378-2158.
Trapped Bald Eagle is Gradually Recovering
A Bald Eagle that was found at False Bay with a leg-hold trap attached to its foot is recovering at Wolf Hollow. The eagle, which was spotted by several people who live in the False Bay area, was having trouble taking off because a heavy metal trap was clamped on one foot, and it was dragging a length of chain behind it. The first attempt to capture the eagle was unsuccessful because it was still able to fly, but the following day, Wolf Hollow staff were able to catch her.
The eagle must have been struggling with the trap for several days because she was thin and weak and her tail feathers were dirty and broken. The trap was immediately removed, but the jaws of the trap had smashed the bone in the middle toe of her left foot and the surrounding tissue was dead.
After a couple of days of treatment at Wolf Hollow, the eagle was strong enough for surgery, and veterinarian Dr Susan Besel operated to remove the damaged section of toe. The rest of her foot looked healthy, but it was difficult to assess how much damage had been done to muscles and tendons by dragging the heavy trap around. Continued here...
Town seeks Proposals for Allocation of Lodging Tax Grant Funds to Promote 2017 Tourism
Town of Friday Harbor Press Release: The Town of Friday Harbor’s Lodging Tax Advisory Committee (LTAC) is accepting applications for grants to fund tourism promotion. The promotions must be for events and activities specifically intended to promote tourism within the Town in 2017. Preference will be given to those operations and activities that encourage tourists to visit during the spring and fall shoulder seasons. Summer activities are acceptable; however applicants are advised to give careful and strategic thought to the scheduling of their events to avoid what are recognized as high traffic weekends.
The grants are awarded annually and are funded with the State’s Hotel Motel Tax collected on all lodging stays of less than 30 days in length within the Town. Funds must be used to promote tourism within the Town of Friday Harbor. Grant proposals are reviewed by the LTAC which is made up of council members, lodging owners, and community members appointed by the Mayor. The LTAC then provides recommendations to the Town Council on how to allocate the grant funds. Continued here...
Summer Schedule Takes Effect
Please be advised that Summer Sailing Schedule goes into effect on Sunday, June 12, 2016. Schedule highlights include increased service between Anacortes and the San Juan Islands, two trips to Sidney, B.C., and a pilot schedule that includes more direct sailings to Vashon Island and Southworth on the weekends. Know before you go - check out Summer Sailing Schedule. More here...
Customers can get ahead of the crowds by making a reservation.
The First Wildland Fire of the Year
Press Release from San Juan Island Fire & Rescue: At approximately 1:43 PM the afternoon of May 27, 2016 the first wildland fire of the year on San Juan Island was reported burning near #2 School House Road. Responding units included a Type 3 brush truck, three command units, two water tenders, a back hoe and 13 firefighters. Personnel extinguished the approximate 1/2 acre fire which was located in heavy brush and sparse timber at 4 PM.
Gusty winds and fuel arrangement, combined with unseasonably dry conditions are the major contributors to the fire's spread. The cause of the fire is under investigation. A big thanks goes to our volunteers for the great job they did and for helping to keep our community safe. More here...
BLM Releases AMS for San Juan Islands Plan
Press Release: The Bureau of Land Management announced on May 24 that it has released the Analysis of the Management Situation (AMS), a step in the development of the Resource Management Plan (plan) for the San Juan Islands National Monument (Monument). The AMS provides a snapshot of what the BLM knows about Monument lands and resources and some of the management ideas it will explore through the plan. Because it is only intended as a snapshot, the AMS does not provide the level of detail, background information, references, or definitions that will be included in the draft plan.
While the AMS is a stand-alone document that will not be revised, the BLM will update and add to the information included in the AMS as it develops the introduction, affected environment chapter, and no action and action alternatives for the draft plan. The management opportunities described in the AMS are preliminary and will be discussed in much greater detail in the draft plan, which will include an array of possible approaches to managing the national monument. Continued here...
Old Postcards of the San Juans
We have compiled a pretty good collection of cool old postcards of Friday Harbor, Roche Harbor and the San Juan Island islands, see them all here...
Hiyu Ferry to be Retired and Sold
Press Release from After nearly 50 years of service, Washington's Hiyu ferry has officially become part of history and sailed into retirement.
It was in 1967, as the United States celebrated its first Super Bowl, that the Hiyu joined the Washington State Ferries fleet. At only 162 feet long, the Hiyu is debatably the most beloved ferry in WSF's history because of its petite size.
Population growth in the Puget Sound region and greater demand for ferries means the ferry system has outgrown the Hiyu. With a maximum capacity of only 199 passengers and 34 vehicles, a lack of ADA accommodations and high maintenance costs, Washington State Department of Transportation officials decided it is time for the 49-year-old vessel to officially retire."What makes the Hiyu so cute is also what makes it impractical for Washington State Ferries," said Washington State Ferries Chief of Staff Elizabeth Kosa. Continued here...
Construction Officially Begins on State’s Newest Ferry, Suquamish
Press Release from The Washington State Department of Transportation continues to grow its Olympic Class ferry fleet with a keel laying ceremony marking the beginning of construction of the Suquamish.
On Tuesday, May 10, Gov. Jay Inslee, state Sen. Christine Rolfes, and Suquamish Tribal Chairman Leonard Forsman struck ceremonial welds on the keel of the Suquamish, at Vigor’s Harbor Island Shipyard in Seattle. Inslee welded his granddaughter’s initials, Rolfes, an orca whale, and Forsman, a circle with a dot, the ancient design element found at “Old Man House” in the early Suquamish winter village.
Traditionally, a keel laying ceremony is said to bring good luck during construction and to the captain and crew who will operate the vessel.
Replacing an aging fleet. The Suquamish’s keel laying ceremony comes only weeks after significant progress was made on the third Olympic Class vessel, Chimacum. Last month, the Chimacum’s superstructure was joined to its hull in drydock at Vigor. Construction on the Chimacum is now about 75 percent complete. Continued here...
New Fault Discovered in the Salish SeaPress Release from The SeaDoc Society: Seafloor mapping is a critical tool for understanding ocean habitats. As you can imagine, the seafloor is really hard for most people to see without mapping tools. But Dr. Gary Greene of SeaDoc’s Tombolo mapping lab knows that seafloor mapping also has other merits, such as uncovering faults that could cause earthquakes.
Dr. Greene and his Canadian collaborator Dr. Vaughn Barry recently revealed, in detail, a 125km-long series of faults that run from Washington to Victoria associated with the Devil’s Mountain Fault Zone. Devil’s Mountain Fault image above by Dr. Gary Greene.
San Juan Island Farmers' Market
San Juan Island Farmers' Market runs every Saturday 10-1pm, April 2016 until October, 2016. The Market is your source for beautiful and bountiful island produce, fine crafts, and delicious prepared foods and is looking mighty fine these days. It is always incredible to see the variety of fruits and vegetables our local farmers coax out of the Northwest earth.
Agriculture is not just an ornament on our landscape, its bounty is no mere tourist attraction at the market. The food you buy from these hard working people is a testament to island sustainability, good agricultural and business practice, and the highly serious topic of how we feed ourselves in an ever changing world. The simple gesture of supporting the market contributes so much to our community, our economy and our landscape.
So come fill your market basket with local products and tap your toes to the music of the market band and guest musicians. The Farmers' Market on Facebook
Thanks for Another Great Islands Clean-Up
Press Release: Co-organizers of the sixth annual Great Islands Clean-Up on San Juan Island -- Lori Stokes, Jana Marks, and David Dehlendorf -- would like to thank our island's approximately 300 volunteers who participated this year, helping to make San Juan Island “litter-free by the sea.” Over 100 of these litter-picker-uppers cleaned our beaches (including South Beach, Granny’s Cove, Jacksons Beach, 4th of July Beach, Eagle Cove, Mulno Cove, and Third Lagoon), and the rest cleaned our roadsides. A grand total of about 2,150 pounds of litter was collected!!
Many groups provided enthusiastic volunteers: Bailer Hill Construction, Cub Scout Pack 4090, Cutthroat Pirates, Friday Harbor Labs, Friends of the San Juans, Island Air, Islanders Bank, Kiwanis, League of Women Voters, Leo’s Club, Lighthouse Preschool, Lions, Mitchell Pt. Litter Ladies & Gents, Mt. Dallas Volunteer Group, Paideia School, Ravenhill Construction, Rotary, San Juan County Land Bank, San Juan County Parks, San Juan Island National Historic Park, Soroptimists, Spring Street International School, Stillpoint School, Trash Masters, and Vinny’s, These groups were supplemented by the efforts of numerous other volunteers who picked up litter near their homes or businesses. Continued here...
Update on OPALCO Violence - Reward Now $26,000
Press Release from OPALCO: It's been two months since OPALCO was the target of violence and threats of violence in the workplace. The investigation is ongoing and the community has raised a reward of more than $26,000 for information that leads to the conviction of the criminals involved in these senseless acts.
Our staff participated in a Critical Incident Stress Debrief session facilitated by Orcas Fire & Rescue. In particular, I'd like to thank Battalion Chief Patrick Shepler for reaching out to us with this important community resource. "We are all first responders," said Shepler. "Your awesome linemen are often the first on a fire scene and we rely on their expertise to secure the scene for our personnel to their jobs - and to protect the public. We have a mutual understanding of what it means to be professionals in stressful situations."
Safety is our highest priority. We have increased security at our offices with new protocols, devices and measures in place. We will not tolerate any act of threat that compromises the safety of our employees. And, that includes harassment and bullying outside of the office. In our small island communities, we cannot sustain ourselves without civility. Continued here...
Summer Season Ferry Vehicle Reservations
Press Release from Mark your calendar! April 12 is the first day that customers can make summer sailing reservations on the San Juan Islands, Sidney, BC, and Port Townsend/Coupeville routes. We anticipate a high volume of phone calls and visits to our website, and customers should expect extended wait times for service. If you would like to make reservations for less popular sailings – for example, mid-week departures or sailings that do not coincide with a holiday – you may wish to contact us starting Wednesday, April 13, to avoid long wait times. Thank you for your patience and understanding. More here...
Islanders Walk Over 1,000 Miles with their Dogs to Raise Money for Animal Shelter!
Press Release from the It’s a well-known fact that folks here on San Juan Island love their dogs. This week marked over 1000 miles walked over the last six months by island residents and their dogs using a smart phone application called, Wooftrax; every mile walked raising money for The Animal Protection Society of Friday Harbor.
The Wooftrax “Walk for a Dog” program is a downloadable program that can be installed on any smart phone. The app keeps track of how many miles the user walks their dog or an animal shelter dog as a volunteer. Best of all, the program is designed as a fund raising mechanism for animal shelters and rescue groups. Walk for a Dog is a simple, year-round app that promotes healthy interaction between dogs and their owners, and raises money every day to support the mission of animal shelters and rescue organizations. It also gives people a reason to think about their local animal organization every time they take their dogs for a walk.
The Salmon Bank at South Beach
Press Release from SJI National Historical Park: Before there was the South Beach, known and loved by San Juan Islanders and visitors from around the world as a summer picnic ground and a spot to watch winter storms, there was the Salmon Bank. And for thousands of years, it was a place to make a living. Spanish explorers during expeditions up the Strait of Juan de Fuca conducted 1790-1792 reported "...an incredible quantity of salmon and numerous Indians."
Fifty years later, in October 1853, James Alden of the U.S. Coast Survey enthused about the maritime resources. "Salmon abound in great quantities at certain seasons of the year, when the water in every direction seems to be filled with them…The Hudson's Bay Company has a fishing establishment at San Juan … where I am informed they have put up this season 600 barrels of salmon."
Not one month later Vancouver Island Gov. James Douglas wrote London that "...These islands are exceedingly valuable, not only on account of their relative position to Vancouver Island, but also from the fact that their shores and inlets abound with salmon and other fish which form a productive export and an inexhaustible form of great wealth." Continued here...
Press Release from The SeaDoc Society: Thousands of tankers and cargo ships transit the Salish Sea each year like an endless run of behemoth, bunker-fueled salmon. With new and expanding terminals proposed on both sides of the U.S.-Canadian border (to export coal, oil, and natural gas to Asia), the number of megaships using our waters is set to climb dramatically.
More ships and terminals mean more underwater noise likely to affect orcas, an increased risk of vessel strikes and catastrophic spills, and the yet-unknown effects of coal dust on sh and plant life. While each project is being evaluated independently, no one had looked at the big picture.
So SeaDoc and the Swinomish Tribe researched threats coming from all of the U.S. and Canadian projects combined. After all, oil spills don’t respect national borders, and it doesn’t matter to a humpback whale whether it’s hit by a ship carrying American coal or Canadian crude.
By studying the potential effects of six different projects on 50 critical species, we showed that each is likely to harm a multitude of species. The more ships and terminals added, the greater the problem, and there’s a chance the total impact would be even greater than the sum of each project’s damage combined. This is exactly why we need to be looking on both sides of the border, at all projects, at the same time. Continued here...
Canadian / US Failure of Collaboration Puts Salish Sea at Risk
Press Release from The SeaDoc Society: “We need to deal with the impacts of new energy projects at the level of the ecosystem, not just project to project,” says wildlife veterinarian Dr. Joe Gaydos, lead author of a new paper analyzing the combined threats posed by six fossil fuel transportation projects in the Salish Sea.
The new study by SeaDoc and the Swinomish Tribe was recently published in the international journal PLoS ONE. What did they find? Canada and the US need to do a better job collaborating on Salish Sea issues.
The study evaluated the threats posed by each project to 50 species that are important to the Coast Salish people. These include endangered humpback and killer whales, and key food species including seaducks, salmon, clams, and Dungeness crabs.
Gaydos says, “When you look at these projects cumulatively, they have a high possibility of affecting the Coast Salish and everybody else. The environmental impact statements aren’t looking at the threats collectively.”
Although the Salish Sea is an integrated ecosystem, it is shared by Washington, British Columbia, and indigenous Coast Salish governments. When US and Canadian governmental bodies evaluate proposed developments, they rarely take into account projects occurring outside of their jurisdictions. Continued here...
UAV Reveals Killer Whales in Striking Detail
Press Release from the NOAA: Unmanned aerial vehicle allows scientists to study killer whale health and reproduction while also offering a glimpse into the family life of these social animals. One of the populations of killer whales that spends part of the year around the San Juan Islands north of Seattle is called the Southern Resident killer whales, and they’re very endangered. There are only 81 of them left in the wild. That’s the bad news. But the good news is that 81 is five more than there were last year. There was a baby boom among the Southern Residents recently, and for a population of this size, five new individuals is a very big deal.
In this video podcast we’ll look at several amazing photographs that give us a glimpse not only of some of the new calves, but also of the family lives of these social animals. The photos were taken with an unmanned aerial vehicle, and to help us understand the photos we have one of the scientists who took them On the Line with us today. Continued here...
Salish Sea Vessel Traffic Projections: A 43 Percent Increase
Press Release from FRIENDS of the San Juans: San Juan County, WA – If all the new and expanding terminal and refinery projects in the Salish Sea are permitted and developed, including projects that became operational in 2014, there would be a 43 percent increase in large, commercial marine vessel traffic.
FRIENDS of the San Juans and San Juan Islanders for Safe Shipping have released the Salish Sea Vessel Traffic Projections featuring 18 new or expanded proposed or recently completed projects, which cumulatively would add an additional 5,300 annual vessel transits to and from ports in British Columbia and Washington State.
The Salish Sea includes the international Strait of Juan de Fuca, Haro Strait, Boundary Pass and southern Georgia Strait; Washington State’s Puget Sound and San Juan Islands; and British Columbia’s Gulf Islands and Strait of Georgia. The Salish Sea also includes critical habitat for species listed as endangered in both Canada and the US including the Southern Resident Killer Whale, Chinook salmon, rockfish and marbled murrelet. Continued here...
The Campaign to Save Mount Grant
: The San Juan Preservation Trust announces the launch of a major fundraising campaign to create a new nature preserve in the heart of San Juan Island. The Campaign to Save Mount Grant, if successful, will permanently protect one of San Juan’s most valuable gems and make it accessible to the public.
The 141-acre property, valued for years by locals as a hiking destination, was identified on historic maps as “Mt. Grant” as late as 1920. Known by various names since then, it was most recently marketed as the “Lawson Ridge” residential community. The property hosts important native plant and animal habitat, lush wildflower meadows, serene hiking trails, and, with some improvements, easy road access to the summit so that people of all ages and physical ability can enjoy the spectacular, 360-degree views. From the top, one can gaze northeast to Mount Baker and the Twin Sisters, southeast down into San Juan Valley and Lopez Island, and north/northwest to Stuart Island and beyond to the Canadian Gulf Islands. Continued here...
New Non-Profit for Animals in Need
Press Release from Julie Duke: Island Haven Animal Sanctuary's mission is to provide lifetime care and sheltering for animals who, while still able to lead a quality life, are unable to find homes due to old age, chronic illness, handicaps, temperament issues or other factors, or who have been rescued from neglect and/or abuse situations and require rehabilitation.
However, before we can provide a home for these special animals, we have to find a forever home for the Sanctuary. Donating it would be a great tax write-off for someone, or leasing it to us in-kind or for a reasonable amount are also options. Ideally it would be at least five acres, have fenced pastures, a barn and/or stables, running water and electricity, and either a small home or ability to put a trailer on it so a human caregiver can stay there if an animal needs around the clock care. So, if you or someone you know has such a location, please contact us as soon as possible at email@example.com or 360-472-1040.
This all began about a month ago when I answered a Facebook post to adopt three senior horses (two of them have never been ridden, one not in the last twenty years). Continued here...
A little History: English Camp
A little history from the NPS: When Great Britain and the United States in 1859 agreed to a joint occupation of San Juan Island until the water boundary between the two nations could be settled, it was decided that camps would be located on opposite ends of the island.
Shortly after the British and American governments affirmed Lieutenant General Winfield Scott’s proposal to jointly occupy San Juan Island, the Royal Navy started looking for a home for its British Royal Marine Light Infantry contingent. Capt. James Prevost, commander of H.M.S. Satellite, selected the site on Garrison Bay, 15 miles northwest of American Camp, from among seven finalists.
Roche described the ground as "well-sheltered, has a good supply of water and grass, and is capable of affording maneuvering ground for any number of men that are likely to be required in that locality..." He added that a trail, 11 miles long, led from this area to the Hudson’s Bay farm at Bellevue. Continued here...
Check out these cool time lapse videos made by Chris Teren of Teren Photography.
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