Mussel Watch could be coming to Whidbey Beach

Image of mussel covered rock on beach

No, it’s not a new reality show for body builders, it’s an ongoing study of shellfish health.

In fact Mussel Watch is part of the National Status and Trends Program of NOAA and, “the longest running contaminant monitoring program in US coastal waters and has been tracking contaminants in bivalves since 1986. However, due to budget constraints, MW is seeking out State and regional partners to take on local sampling efforts, while the national program continues the sample analysis, data processing and web-posting. We believe MW is an important complement to our State’s marine and estuarine contaminant monitoring efforts. So in an effort to bolster the program WDFW has recently taken on the collection of mussels at all the Washington MW sample sites. Together we are beginning the process of shifting MW sampling efforts from the national program to State and local partners, and we are hoping to enroll the help of other groups (local MRC’s and other volunteers) to accomplish the sampling. Some groups that have become involved include the Washington Sea Grant office, the Snohomish County Marine Resources Committee, the Olympic Coast National Marine Sanctuary, the Stillaguamish Tribe, Skagit Valley Community College, and Everett Community College Ocean Research College Academy. “

Beach Watchers are considering taking on this additional monitoring project at Possession Point.

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