Continued Efforts are Required
There’s no argument that great strides have been made to help save the Puget Sound. But, more than 67% of Central Puget Sound has been hardened along the shoreline with rock, seawalls, and bulkheads. Throughout the entire Puget Sound, more than a quarter of the natural shoreline has been hardened these same ways.
The shoreline is the the best place for forage fish to reside and prosper. The Puget Sound is the largest oyster producer in North America as well as contributing to a wide variety of seafood products.
Chinook salmon that are the primary food source for Orcas are currently listed as endangered and threatened and with the shoreline being armored, it is simply destroying habitat and thus, lessening those populations further. Due to the lessening population of Salmon, There are currently only 75 Orcas remaining in the Puget Sound.
With the shoreline unable to regenerate its lost sediment in many areas due to the seawalls and other hardened shorelines, it seems that there simply isn’t enough being done in a quick enough time manner, so companies like FishViews are stepping up to the plate in an increased effort to save this estuary. Saving the Orca and Chinook Salmon populations is one of the primary reasons for FishViews desire to increase conservation efforts.
FishViews Bridging the Gap
FishViews is a conservation minded company that is bringing a common problem for all into the public’s view, literally. In the past, they have mapped over 1,200 miles of rivers in the Northwest U.S. including the entire Stillaguamish River in western Washington. In fact, they have mapped each the six rivers in the Northwest. These virtual reality maps were used to contribute to salmon recovery by allowing natural resources managers to identify habitat restoration opportunities.
They have begun a campaign to create a virtual reality map of the entire Puget Sound which in turn will be used to provide resources, and strategic and logistical support towards the saving of the Puget Sound and its inhabitants.
These virtual reality maps are already underway, and provide an in-depth look at the shoreline and surrounding waters
As it can be difficult to understand the magnitude of this problem, FishViews plans on making it easier to bring this issue to light via the mapping and Virtual Reality tour feature of the near 1,300 miles of Puget Sound shoreline. FishViews hopes to provide environmentalists and conservationists with the ability to scan the entire shoreline to identify ways to promote waterway safety, recreation, science, and conservation.
With so many options to monitor the water quality, this project will make it even easier to target areas of the Puget Sound where efforts need to be focused
These image maps will be made available online via customized interactive software which will also be available to embed onto partnering websites as well. Plus, a copy of all of the panoramic images taken of the massive expanse of shoreline will be archived via the Washington State Historical Society.
To donate or become a partner, visit this link: https://www.fishviewit.org/campaigns/puget-sound/
To learn more about this campaign, visit this link: https://www.fishviews.com/puget-sound-vr/#1
To track the mapping progress from this campaign, visit this link: https://arcg.is/8zOLi
By donating, you will be helping create an online place for everyone to explore Puget Sound shorelines, monitor the progress of the conservation efforts, access and collect historical data, and learn about the conservation efforts taking place in the Puget Sound.
August 9th, 2018
Written By ANGLR Team Member, Derek Horner