The focus for this week’s blog is something special. I recently accompanied the fisheries crew for an electrofishing survey! Before we drove out to the site, I got to pick out a pair of waders for the trip and this was my first time wearing waders!

Along a creek in Point Reyes National Seashore, Kevin García López and I assisted with work at three sites. At each site, a section of the creek had to be sectioned off before the electrofishing machine could be used to stun the fish. I helped to catch the fish with a net in the creek and write down data about each fish caught. 

Kevin García López (left) writing down data (Photo by Diego Morales).
Kevin García López (left) writing down data with Teresa Urrutia (center) and Brentley McNeill (left) (Photo by Diego Morales).
Steelhead trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss).
Steelhead trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss) (Photo by Diego Morales).

Walking from site to site with all the equipment was tiring, coupled with the fact that we were wading through the creek upstream! But the hard work was rewarded by being able to see these creatures up-close:

  • Steelhead trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss)
  • Sculpin (Cottoidea)
  • Pacific Lamprey Ammocete (Entosphenus tridentatus)
  • California Giant Salamander (Dicamptodon ensatus)

This outing was a great experience, from learning how to catch fish in a creek and hearing about watershed restoration projects in the park. 

Diego Morales (left) writing down data (Photo by Kevin García López).
Diego Morales (left) with Teresa Urrutia (right) and Brentley McNeill (back) (Photo by Kevin García López).
Diego Morales in waders (Photo by Kevin García López).
Diego Morales in waders (Photo by Kevin García López).

In other news, I offered my plastic waste program “Unclogging Our Oceans: The Plastic Waste Crisis and Action” again. With mostly sunny skies, I helped guide a discussion and lead a 45 minute long beach cleanup on Drake’s Beach! Each time I give the program I improve, and I cannot wait to teach more visitors about this subject and inspire action. 

Diego Morales (right) leading park visitors on a beach cleanup (Photo by Anela Kopshever).
Diego Morales (right) leading park visitors on a beach cleanup (Photo by Anela Kopshever).

Also, Kevin and I accompanied Tule elk biologist Dane Horowski for a Tule elk (Cervus canadensis nannodes) survey in the park. Besides getting to see these wondrous animals, Dane shared great stories and advice about working for the National Park Service. 

Kevin García López (left) and Dane Horowski (right) (Photo by Diego Morales).
Kevin García López (left) and Dane Horowski (right) (Photo by Diego Morales).
Tule elk with antlers (Photo by Diego Morales).
Tule elk with antlers (Photo by Diego Morales).

This week also marks Latino Conservation Week. Kevin and I completed some community outreach at a local Latino Conservation event at Richardson Bay Audubon Center. Here, we set up a table representing Point Reyes National Seashore; Kevin presented about mammal skulls, and I talked about the relationship between plastic waste and migratory birds. Unbeknownst to me, a salsa dance instructor was hired for this event, so Kevin and I joined in on the fun! 

Diego Morales representing Point Reyes National Seashore (Photo by Kevin García López).
Diego Morales representing Point Reyes National Seashore (Photo by Kevin García López).
Richardson Bay Audubon Center and Sanctuary (Photo by Diego Morales).
Richardson Bay Audubon Center and Sanctuary (Photo by Diego Morales).
Diego Morales salsa dancing in Mosaics in Science gear (Photo by Steven Underhill).
Diego Morales salsa dancing in Mosaics in Science gear (Photo by Steven Underhill).

On the seashore, Kevin García López led a bilingual hike to kick-off Latino Conservation Week, and I served as event photographer and radio communications specialist to help Kevin offer the event.

Kevin García López leading a hike (Photo by Diego Morales).
Kevin García López leading a hike (Photo by Diego Morales).

That’s all for this week folks! Thanks for reading this blog. I look forward to writing again in a week, and please leave any questions or comments below!


Diego Morales

Diego was born and raised in the San Francisco Bay Area and is an undergraduate student in the Society & Environment major and Anthropology minor programs at the University of California at Berkeley. This summer he is interning as an interpretation and resource education assistant at Point Reyes National Seashore in the interpretive department. Before Point Reyes, Diego spent a semester as an Every Kid in a Park intern at Rosie the Riveter/World War II National Historical Park. A more long-term educational and career goal of his would be to bridge and solve environmental and social issues being faced, ideally as an environmental lawyer.

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