Oregon Sea Grant publication wins Silver Award of Distinction

Oregon Sea Grant has won a Silver Award of Distinction in the 2016 Communicator Awards competition, for its field guide Key Aquatic Invasive Species Watch: Japanese Tsunami Marine Debris in the Eastern Pacific.CommSilver1

According to the Communicator Awards’ website, the competition is sanctioned and judged by the Academy of Interactive and Visual Arts, “an invitation-only group consisting of top-tier professionals from acclaimed media, communications, advertising, creative and marketing firms.” The competition, which receives “over 6,000 entries from companies and agencies of all sizes,” honors work that “transcends innovation and craft – work that made a lasting impact.”

The Award of Distinction is presented for “projects that exceed industry standards in quality and achievement.”

You can download a free PDF or order printed copies of Key Aquatic Invasive Species Watch here.

Two Oregon Sea Grant publications win awards

Two Oregon Sea Grant publications have won awards in the 2016 Hermes Creative Awards competition:2016 Gold Site bug

  • Key Aquatic Invasive Species Watch won a Gold Award in the “Publications-Field Guide” category
  • Confluence (fall/winter 2015) won an Honorable Mention in the “Publications-Newsletter” category

According to hermesawards.com, the Hermes Creative Awards is “an international competition for creative professionals involved in the concept, writing, and design of traditional and emerging media. … Judges are industry professionals who look for companies and individuals whose talent exceeds a high standard of excellence and whose work serves as a benchmark for the industry.”

Hermes estimates there were “about 6,000 entries from throughout the United States and many other countries” in this year’s awards competition.

Key Aquatic Invasive Species Watch is available here.

Confluence is available here.

Oregon Sea Grant wins two silver awards

Oregon Sea Grant has won two Silver Awards of Distinction in the 18th Annual Communicator Awards competition, one each for its “Aquatic Animal Health” brochure and its Cascade Head Scenic Research Area video.

The Communicator Awards are judged and overseen by the International Academy of the Visual Arts (IAVA), a 550+ member organization of professionals from various disciplines of the visual arts. See www.iavisarts.org for more information.

According to Linda Day, executive director of the IAVA, “The pool of entries we received for this year’s Communicator Awards serves as a true testament to the innovative ideas and capabilities of communications and marketing professionals around the world. On behalf of the entire Academy, we congratulate this year’s Communicator Award Entrants and Winners for their passion and dedication. We are humbled to be given the opportunity to recognize such amazing work.”

This year’s Communicator Awards received  more than 6,000 entries from companies and agencies of all sizes, making it one of the largest awards of its kind in the world. Visit www.communicatorawards.com for more information.








Volunteers sought for Whale Watch Week

Gray Whale breaching (photo courtesy of NOAA)

Gray Whale breaching (photo courtesy of NOAA)

NEWPORT – If you love whales, enjoy meeting people and don’t mind spending some time outdoors on a blustery winter day, Oregon’s winter Whale Watch Week wants you.

Volunteers are being sought for training as interpreters and whale-spotting guides at state parks up and down the Oregon coast for the annual event, which takes place this year from Dec. 26 through Jan. 1.

Gray whales can be seen off the Oregon coast year-round, but their numbers peak during their twice-yearly migrations between feeding grounds in Alaska’s Bering Sea and calving lagoons in Baja California. The full round trip  is more than 10,000 miles (16,000 km), the longest known migration for any mammal.

During the peak of the southward migration each winter, as many as 30 whales an hour can be seen off coastal headlands and viewing areas. Gray whales can grow to 40 feet long and 70,000 pounds, and their migrations often bring them close enough to the coast to be spotted by the naked eye, if you know what to look for.

Whale Watch Weeks, started in the late 1970s by Oregon Sea Grant educators at the OSU Hatfield Marine Science Center, has grown to a twice-yearly program administered by Oregon State Parks from its Whale Watching Center in Depoe Bay. During the winter and spring weeks, as many as 450 trained volunteers take turns at two dozen of the most popular coastal whale-watch sites, helping visitors spot whales and teaching them about the lives and habits of these giant marine mammals.

Volunteer training for Winter Whale Watch Week will take place on Sat., Dec. 10 at the HMSC Visitor Center in Newport. Dr. Bruce Mate, OSU marine mammal specialist, will preside. Additional training sessions for Spring Whale Watch Week will take place in January and February.

Tsunami preparedness brochure available online

Three Things You Need to Know About Tsunamis“Three Things You Need to Know About Tsunamis,” a new, easy-to-use brochure designed for Oregon coast residents and visitors, is available online from Oregon Sea Grant.

Written by Patrick Corcoran, Sea Grant Extension’s coastal hazards specialist, the handy,  printable brochure covers three essential facts about preparing for a tsunami:

  • The difference between local and distant tsunamis, and what that means to people trying to escape the potentially devastating inundation
  • Which coastal areas are likely to be unsafe should a tsunami strike
  • What people can do in advance to be prepared

Marine scientists say the Oregon Coast is overdue for the sort of high-magnitude earthquake and ensuing tsunami that struck Japan in March. Even if  “the Big One” doesn’t strike, many coastal areas are vulnerable to tsunamis generated by distant quakes in other parts of the Pacific Rim.

Corcoran, based in Astoria, works with coastal communities and state and federal agencies to increase public awareness of the risks, and make people better prepared to deal with disaster when it strikes.

The new brochure carries the same message as his community talks and a previously released Sea Grant video on the subject: It’s not a matter of “if,” but “when.”

The largest earthquakes on earth happen along the Cascadia subduction zone, at regular geologic intervals.” As Corcoran writes, “The last Big One was in 1700 AD. Given historic averages, we are about due. We need to prepare for this inevitability.”

Designed by Sea Grant artist Patricia Andersson, the new brochure is intended for wide distribution. Coastal families can use them, along with maps of local evacuation routes, to develop their own tsunami preparedness and evacuation plans. Motels, visitor attractions and other coastal businesses can make them available to visitors. And local emergency preparedness groups can use them as guides for community presentations.

The brochure is available for free download from Oregon Sea Grant, both as a full-color, printable .pdf and in an accessible plain-text version.

Information about single-copy and bulk orders of the brochure will be added soon to the Sea Grant Web site. In the meantime, queries can be sent to sea.grant.communications@oregonstate.edu

More information: Watch the three-minute video, The Three Things You Need To Know (Flash required)

What’s fresh on the Oregon coast?

Fresh seafood at Local Ocean in NewportWondering what seafood will be in season when you visit the Oregon coast? Oregon Sea Grant’s Kaety Hildenbrand has compiled a handy, one-page guide to local seafood availability for 2011, based on  harvest estimates and commercial seasons set by fisheries regulators.

Right now, for instance, you should be able to find fresh, locally caught Chinook salmon, Dungeness crab and pink shrimp, as well as  flounder, sole, rockfish and lingcod (generally available year-round).

June should bring the appearance of albacore tuna and, late in the month, Pacific halibut, depending on when the fish make their appearance.

Fresh, locally caught seafood is available in markets and restaurants up and down the coast, and direct from the fishermen in many coastal ports. A family trip to the docks with an ice-filled cooler can be a great way to learn more about where your dinner comes from, how it’s harvested and the people who catch it.

The guide, “What’s Fresh and When in 2011” is ready to download and print, and suitable for hanging on the refrigerator door or tucking in the glove compartment for your next trip to the coast. Download it here in .pdf format.

Hildenbrand is Sea Grant’s Extension marine fisheries educator, based in Newport, where she engages the fishing community and general public on issues ranging from fisheries management to marine energy and multiple ocean uses.