Greetings, everyone! I hope everyone is doing well. Me, personally? I’m doing great, thanks! We are now over the hump for the month of August, which means my time as intern for the Environment for the Americas is coming close to an end! It makes me feel a little sad to know that my time at Newport is soon to wrap up, but also excited to see what the future awaits me. It really is surprising that almost 6 months have passed, and it seems like its only been several weeks. I wouldn’t leave this wonderful coastal town without having a few guests of my own first!
I’ve been hoping for the longest time to have members from the #EFTA team to come by and visit me… and my wishes have finally been answered! Last week I had the honor of welcoming two members; Isabel, who was the previous intern for Yaquina Head Outstanding Natural Area, and Susan who is the Executive Director for the organization! Isabel and Susan flew in to check in on us Oregon Coast interns and our work sites as well. I joined them on their drive down from Hatfield Marine Science Center to Cape Perpetua where Edder and Christine were stationed at! Its been a while since I’ve seen them from their bird day event, so it was nice to come back with the team for one big reunion! Edder and Christine, as well as their supervisor showed us their tide pool area as we discussed the future for other EFTA interns and what’s to come. We also visited one of their sites where they conducted surveys for migratory shore birds, which was on a sandy jetty with a good amount of tidal mudflat for shorebirds to rest and eat.
Afterwards drove together to visit my area of the coast: Newport, Oregon. We immediately drove to Yaquina Head where I would give them a tour of the area. It was nice for Isabel to come back to Yaquina as well, as she saw some familiar faces from a year ago! Meredith also joined us to discuss how things have been at YHONA, as well as the future for the next interns. I had the pleasure of guiding them in an area that was completely new to me just months ago. Now, it feels like a home of friends and sea birds! I was also glad to have Edder and Christine come visit, as they have never been to the site before. I would discuss the wildlife of the natural area, the sea birds surrounding the headland, a brief history of the lighthouse itself before they got a tour, and the tide pools as well. I believe it was worth the visit just to see Isabel’s excitement over the Common murre chicks, since she has helped out with the Seabird Oceanography Lab as well!
After getting some food and saying my goodbyes to Edder and Christine, I guided Isabel and Susan around the Yaquina estuary where I would conduct my shorebird surveys. We walked the same trail Isabel would walk a year ago, looking for any shorebird resting at the tidal mudflat. That day we managed to see a flock of sandpipers and a few Killdeer near the end, as well as resident birds such as the ubiquitous gull, several Great egrets, and a kingfisher! It would’ve been nice for them to stick around for another day or two, but with their busy schedules they could only come by and visit for the day. Regardless, I was happy to see them once again, and thankful that they took some time from their day to check up on us! I know I’m going to miss this place when I leave soon, and I can only hope that I can come back and visit the friends and family I’ve made here on the Oregon coast!