Puget Sound Orca Recovery Day - 10/19/19
Volunteers Needed to Help with Restoration
WHEN: October 19, 2019 (Saturday) from 9:00 to noon
WHERE: Lake Aldwell Road (follow it to the end for parking), Port Angeles
REGISTRATION: Volunteers must pre-register to ensure we have enough tools and parking. Click on the button or call 360-775-3747, ext. 5.
This is a family friendly event. However, please leave your dogs at home. Thank you.
The removal of the lower Elwha dam in 2011 and the upper Glines Canyon Dam in 2014 gave unrestricted passage to Chinook salmon, as well as other fish species, to make their way through the Elwha River system. Dam removal left roughly 600 acres of former lakebeds to return to native forests for the freed up Elwha River to flow through. Harsh growing conditions, such no top soil, have made establishing conifers a challenge in the old lakebeds. Restoration plantings are crucial in order to restore the ecosystem.
Please consider joining us to plant 700 conifer seedlings in the former Lake Aldwell reservoir as we work to help accelerate the restoration of Elwha River fish habitat. In time, these seedlings will provide vital shade to the river and contribute large woody debris to create excellent instream fish habitat.
We will kick-off the planting project with a brief introduction to the Elwha River restoration project by project partners from the Lower Elwha Klallam Tribe. We will also learn what can be done on a daily basis to support the Orca recovery efforts. We will then break into small groups for planting. Our hope is for folks of all ages to enjoy the beauty of the Elwha River and former lake bed while taking action to make a difference in the plight of the orcas.
Orca Numbers Dropping in the Pacific Northwest
The Southern Resident Killer Whales (orcas) that call Puget Sound home are critically endangered. In the past few months alone, three of our local orcas died from a combination of malnutrition, polluted waters, and stress from local boat traffic, bringing the population down to only 73 orcas.
The single biggest threat to our local orca whales is the fact their primary food source, Chinook Salmon, are also endangered. Salmon comprise 80% of their diet, but Puget Sound salmon populations are a fraction of what they used to be. Conservation Districts around the state, along with dozens of non-profit and agency partners, are coming together to offer the second annual Orca Recovery Day to provide citizens the chance to take action on this critical issue.