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Diving deeper to understand eelgrass wasting disease

Eelgrass at low tide. Photo by Olivia Graham.

New studies show that eelgrass wasting disease is more common in warmer waters, leading to concerns over the future effects of climate change on eelgrass populations in Puget Sound. We continue our series on science findings from the 2018 Salish Sea Ecosystem Conference. Robin McLachlan reports for Salish Sea Currents.  

Bay mussels in Puget Sound show traces of oxycodone

Bay Mussels (Mytilus trossulus) on Edmonds Ferry Dock. Photo [cropped]: brewbooks (CC BY-SA 2.0) https://www.flickr.com/photos/brewbooks/8840874065

By Jeff Rice The opioid epidemic has now hit the waters of Puget Sound. State agencies tracking pollution levels in Puget Sound have discovered traces of oxycodone in the tissues of native bay mussels (Mytilus trossulus) from Seattle and Bremerton area harbors. The mussels were part of the state’s Puget Sound Mussel Monitoring Program. Every …

Shoreline armoring implementation strategy finalized

Before and after composite view at the site of a 2013 bulkhead-removal project on the shore of Penrose Point State Park in Pierce County. Composite: Kris Symer, PSI; original photos: Kristin Williamson, South Puget Sound Salmon Enhancement Group

Following a public comment and external review period, the EPA-funded Habitat Strategic Initiative team has officially released a Shoreline Armoring Implementation Strategy, which aims to reduce shoreline armoring in Puget Sound. The team developed the strategy in partnership with the Washington Department of Fish & Wildlife, Washington Department of Natural Resources, Puget Sound Partnership, Puget Sound …

Governor signs executive order to protect orcas and Chinook

A Southern Resident Killer Whale. Photo courtesy of NOAA.

By Christopher Dunagan for the Puget Sound Institute Worried that Puget Sound’s revered orcas are headed for extinction, Gov. Jay Inslee is calling for quick actions to help the whales — including boosting their food supply and reducing underwater noise that could disrupt their feeding efforts. Surrounded by state and tribal officials, Inslee on Wednesday …