Forage Fish Survey Workshop

The Northwest Straits Commission's recent survey training in Port Townsend was a big success. Twelve members of the Jefferson and Island MRCs and partnering groups enjoyed a primer on Puget Sound forage fish monitoring and management. This is the first in our series of workshops for MRC and other volunteers who are currently involved in local nearshore studies and habitat restoration projects. Big thanks to our partners, Dept. of Fish and Wildlife and Dept. of Natural Resources and Jamie Landry and the Port Townsend Marine Science Center for providing the classroom and lab equipment. To register for a workshop in Bellingham (May 17) or Mukilteo (June 16) please contact Caroline Gibson at

Welcome Holly Faulstich

This month we welcome Holly Faulstich to the Commission staff as the Program Coordinator. Born and raised on the Olympic Peninsula, Holly earned her B.S. in Environmental Science and Biology from Western WA University. After a few glorious field seasons with the National Park Service, she headed to the desert to pursue a Master's degree in Geography at the University of Arizona with a focus on climatology and tree-ring research. From fish habitat surveying to air quality testing, Holly has held a wide range of jobs in the environmental field and is excited to put her skills to use for the Commission.

Protecting Kelp in Puget Sound

The Northwest Straits Commission is launching a new citizen science initative to protect kelp, and monitor changes to local kelp beds and the creatures that associate with them. Kelp is hugely important in Puget Sound, where among an astounding array of 23 species we have the 'bull' kelp familiar to many boaters and beachcombers. This kelp has disappeared from many areas, and like eelgrass, is critical habitat for marine wildlife, warranting protection via Critical Area Ordinances, Shoreline Master Plan updates, and NOAA Fisheries provisions for endangered rockfish – all processes in which MRCs are engaged. Stay tuned for information on a new boat-based survey protocol being developed with kelp experts and MRC volunteers this summer.

Community Forum on Ocean Health

Please join us to learn from experts about some important things happening here in the marine waters of Puget Sound.
May 14, 2014
Everett Station

This event is FREE. Click here for more information (pdf).

Opportunity to help protect surf smelt

The WA Department of Fish and Wildlife is seeking public comments on proposed changes to regulations that could increase protection for smelt in Puget Sound. Click here to submit comments, deadline May 30th. For more information about surf smelt, check out the Sea Doc Society's recent fact sheet.

Northwest Straits Commission Meeting

The next Northwest Straits Commission meeting will be held on Friday, April 25 via conference call. For information about past meetings click here.


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