Mussel Closure

musselsThe Oregon Department of Agriculture and the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife announce the closure of all mussel harvesting from Tillamook Head in Clatsop County to the north jetty of Yaquina Bay at Newport on the central Oregon Coast, due to elevated levels of paralytic shellfish toxins. The closure includes mussels found on the beaches, rocks, jetties, and bay entrances in this section of the Oregon Coast.

Coastal scallops are not affected by this closure when only the adductor muscle is eaten. The consumption of recreationally caught whole scallops is not recommended. Crab are not affected by this level of toxin and are safe to eat. All areas on the Oregon Coast north of Tillamook Head and south of Yaquina Bay’s north jetty remain open to all recreational and commercial shellfish harvesting.

Shellfish contaminated with paralytic shellfish toxins (PSTs) can cause minor to severe illness or even death. The symptoms usually begin with tingling of the mouth and tongue. Severe poisoning can result in dizziness, numbness and tingling in the arms and legs, paralysis of the arms and legs, and paralysis of the muscles used for breathing.

Cooking will not destroy the shellfish toxins. Shellfish toxins are produced by algae and usually originate in the ocean. ODA will continue to test for shellfish toxins weekly, as tides permit. Reopening of an area requires two consecutive tests in the safe range.

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Filed under Central Coast, North Coast

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April 18, 2014 · 12:19 pm

Lubchenco Back At OSU

lubchencoFormer National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Administrator Jane Lubchenco is back on the faculty of Oregon State University where she has a new role – adviser to the university on marine studies issues. OSU has named Lubchenco Distinguished University Professor and Adviser in Marine Studies – a position that will help coordinate and expand Oregon State’s international prominence in marine-related studies, which are spread across several disciplines and account for nearly $100 million annually in research funding.

“After four years at the helm of the nation’s premier agency for the ocean and atmosphere, I’m delighted to be back at OSU, and even more pleased to see the new energy focused on marine science, education, policy and outreach,” Lubchenco said. “From my time at NOAA, I know both the high caliber of marine sciences at OSU and the strong potential for a more robust, visible and effective marine studies program that can provide much-needed global leadership by our faculty and students.

“I’m energized by OSU’s commitment to elevate ocean stewardship and to expand the range and quality of opportunities available to students,” she added. Oregon State’s growth in the marine sciences in recent years has been significant and Lubchenco has played a key role with her seminal research in marine ecology. OSU boasts one of the strongest marine ecology and biology programs in the nation in the College of Science; a formidable oceanography program in the College of Earth, Ocean, and Atmospheric Sciences; and one of the most highly regarded marine research and education facilities in the country in the Hatfield Marine Science Center in Newport. Continue reading

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Free Family Fishing Event At Hebo Lake April 19

ODFW trout fishingThe Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife will release more than 3,000 feisty rainbow trout into Hebo Lake next week in preparation for a free family fishing event at the popular North Coast fishing destination Saturday, April 19 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.  “We’re putting a lot of fish in the lake for this event so we hope everyone will come out and take advantage of this opportunity,” said Ron Rehn, family fishing coordinator for ODFW’s North Coast Watershed District. “We’ll have everything you need for a fun day of fishing. All you have to do is show up.”

A feature of ODFW’s Outdoor Education Program, the event is aimed at introducing people to fishing. To make learning – and catching fish — as fun and easy as possible, ODFW will provide rods, reels, tackle and bait at no charge on a first-come, first-served basis. Experienced instructors will be available to answer questions and offer assistance on every aspect of trout fishing, from baiting and casting a rod to catching and cleaning your fish. Anglers are welcome to bring their own gear, if they prefer, and lucky fishermen will be allowed to keep up to five trout, each.

Hebo Lake is a 3-acre lake located within the Siuslaw National Forest approximately 24 miles southwest of Tillamook. As an added incentive to attend the free fishing event, the Forest Service will waive its usual $5 day use fee for admission to Hebo Lake Campground where the event will take place. Amenities at the campground include picnic tables, ADA barrier-free fishing platforms, restrooms, and several hiking trails.

Kids ages 13 and under do not need fishing licenses. Persons 14 and older will need to have a fishing license and should buy them ahead of time as they will not be sold at the event. Licenses are available for purchase at ODFW’s website ( and at it offices and retail license agents.


Hebo Lake is located 3 ½ miles east of the Hebo Ranger Station on the Hebo Mountain Road. From Hebo, take Hwy. 22 ¼ mile east, then turn left onto Forest Road 14.


For more information, contact Ron Rehn at 503-842-2741 or visit ODFW’s website and click on the “ODFW Outdoors” tab.

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Filed under North Coast, Tillamook

Seal Rock Fire Investigation Report

Seal Rock fire

By Larry Coonrod-

Lincoln County

A recently released investigation into a Feb. 28, 2014 fire that killed a young mother and her two daughters confirms an electrical space heater caused the fatal blaze.  Emergency personnel responded to a report of a motor home and fifth wheel trailer on fire at a property on N. Deer Hill drive about 6:20 a.m. that day.

According to the Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office investigation, Deputy Lance Cummings arrived eight minutes later to find the motorhome fully engulfed with flames shooting 30 feet in the air and firefighters from Seal Rock Fire Department, Central Coast Fire & Rescue and the Yachats Fire Department battling the fire.

Fire destroyed the fifth wheel trailer with Karli Cole, 24, her daughters Serenity Carson Cole, 2, and Sophia Cole, 1, inside.

Blaze Quickly Engulfed Trailer

Cole had been living in the fifth wheel trailer with her boyfriend, Daniel McCoy, on property owned by McCoy’s parents. McCoy told investigators he left the trailer at about 5:30 a.m. to take a shower in his parents’ house.

When he got out of the shower 30 minutes later, he noticed an orange glow coming from outside and saw the trailer on fire. McCoy ran to the trailer, banged on the sides but heard no response from Cole or the two girls. Smoke and fire had blackened the back trailer window, which McCoy used his elbow to shatter.

“Mr. McCoy explained to me as soon as he broke the window out, the trailer instantly became fully engulfed,” Cummings wrote in his report.

The flames quickly spread to the unoccupied motor home. Continue reading

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Alsea River Cleanup April 19th

AlseaRiverThe Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife will join forces with other conservation-minded groups and individuals Saturday, April 19 to rid the Alsea River of trash.  The day-long clean-up is set to begin at 9 a.m. at the U.S. Forest Service’s Blackberry Day Use area, located approximately 19 miles east of Waldport on Highway 34.  The Alsea Sportsman’s Association and Dahl & Dahl are both event partners for this clean-up, and ODFW is seeking additional volunteers to assist in the effort both by boat and from shore.

“We need volunteers to work from the river and others to work from the road, picking up trash along Highway 34 and the Alsea River corridor as well as popular vehicle access recreation sites along the river,” said Christine Clapp, ODFW biologist in Newport.  Free parking passes will be provided to volunteers for the day, and those bringing boats can receive a free shuttle service. Both drift boats and motor boats are needed. There will be coffee and donuts in the morning and a barbecue in the afternoon.


“This is a great and fun way for people to show their support for clean and healthy rivers” said Clapp. The clean-up will focus on the river downstream from Missouri Bend, as river flows allow.


Persons willing to bring a boat to the clean-up are asked to RSVP to Christine Clapp by calling her at 541-265-8306, ext. 253

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Filed under Fish and Wildlife, Waldport


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April 17, 2014 · 1:20 pm