HSU prepares for field season studies of Marine Protected Areas

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TRINIDAD - HSU’s Marine Lab is preparing for it's second year of baseline studies in the North Coast’s Marine Protected Areas.

The protected areas span more than 1,000 square miles from Fort Bragg to the Oregon border, including stretches of ocean, estuary and off-shore rocky coastline. After receiving federal funding last year, HSU started field research in those areas and plans to continue this year. The marine lab will look at the areas more in depth to get a sense of how their ecosystems are changing.

“I think what's been interesting and surprising is the diversity of organisms people have found in this region. We've known that before, but now people are really going out and looking with a fine tooth comb to study all these different critters in this ecosystem. So we're learning a lot about the north coast, things we didn't know before. But of course this is extremely difficult, people are going out in the low tide in the middle of the night, they're going out at sea under different conditions, scuba diving, so it's a huge amount of work,” said Dr. Brian Tissot, HSU Marine and Coastal Science Director.