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2018 winter Lecture Series coming in January!

We hope you were one of the nearly 130 people to attend our 6th annual Fidalgo Shoreline Academy.  It was a great day of learning for everyone.  The presenters were simply outstanding!  We expect to see you again and many others that missed it and heard how great it was.   See you there in October 2018.

If you missed it, don't despair too much. Our 2018 winter Lecture Series is coming upMark your calendar with a reminder for  soon beginning January 19th @ 7 PM at the NWESD.   Visit our Lecture Series page to get the details.

Our fall winds and rain are here and that can only mean . . . it's time to renew your membership supporting Friends of Skagit Beaches. 

Your membership and donations help us to continue offering high-quality community education programs like the Fidalgo Shoreline Academy and Lecture Series and support volunteer projects right here in Skagit County.  You can renew your membership or sign up as a new member online or by mail using our membership form.  For more information visit our membership page.  


Olympia Oyster

Olympia Oyster

The Olympia Oyster is the smallest oyster in the world and the only one native to the west coast. Once abundant from Alaska to Mexico, Olympia Oysters still inhabit that enormous range but only scattered in small numbers here and there.

A big Olympia is just 3½ inches across. Its light gray shell camouflages it in tidepools and shallow bays. As other oysters, the Olympia sucks in water and sifts out tiny plants and animals for food. Every day it filters 12 gallons, benefitting other animals and marine plants by clearing the water.

Each oyster is male or female but alternates genders during its life. Newborns soon look like tiny adults and drift until finding a hard surface to attach to for the rest of their lives. Because the preferred surface is another oyster shell, oysters can grew into huge layered colonies. These shelter many other small animals that are food for fish, crabs, and other marine creatures.

Olympia oysters taste good and grow slowly, maturing in 5 or 6 years. From the 19th century into the 20th, people harvested them more quickly than the population could replenish. And water pollution ruined oyster habitat. Companies raising oysters to sell found the Pacific oyster from Asia was bigger and faster-growing, so that's the main one farmed in the Pacific Northwest now. Work is underway to restore the native oyster, and some commercial growers raise them.

The decline of the once very common Olympia Oyster shows how important it is to follow shellfish harvest regulations and that controlling pollution is essential for the survival of all marine creatures.

In Friends Notes

by Hillary Foster This past year I, as a member of the Puget SoundCorps (PS...
By Betty Carteret Friends of Skagit Beaches again sponsored the Discovery P...
By Wayne Huseby It all started with a simple email in late February from my...

Friends of Skagit Beaches

Our Mission: Protecting Skagit shorelines and marine waters through education, citizen science, and stewardship. Learn More...

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