Whatcom County’s booming dairy and agricultural industry has cost Lummi Nation shellfish harvesters millions of dollars already, and a recent closure of shellfish beds in Portage Bay is adding to the tally.
Manure from dairy cows is discharged either directly or indirectly into the Nooksack River, which flows into Portage Bay. In September, the tribe closed 335 acres of Portage Bay shellfish beds to harvest because of high fecal coliform levels that exceeded National Shellfish Sanitation Program standards. Continued poor water quality led to the closure of two additional areas in December, bringing the total to nearly 500 acres of shellfish beds that are unsafe to harvest. More areas may have to be closed in the coming months if conditions are not improved.
The Squaxin Island Tribe is collecting year-round temperature data on dozens of streams in deep South Sound.
“Salmon need clean, cold water in order to thrive in streams” said Erica Marbet, water resources biologist for the tribe. Using instream temperature monitors, or thermographs, the tribe has been monitoring temperatures …Continue »
Why have salmon been pouring back into the Columbia River in record numbers recently while returns to the Washington coast and Puget Sound continue to drop? One big reason is that for the past decade someone in a position of authority has been in charge of protecting and restoring Columbia River salmon.
That person has been U.S. District Court Judge James Redden. Three times during the …Continue »