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Featured Article

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Red Tides - Red tide is a phenomenon when phytoplankton, a single-celled plant, grow very fast or “bloom” and accumulate into dense, visible patches near the water surface. Red tides are naturally occurring, but nutrient pollution and warming waters can fuel blooms, making them last longer and cover larger areas. Unfortunately, some phytoplankton are extremely harmful and toxic to humans and marine wildlife when they reach high concentrations. For instance, the dinoflagellate Karenia brevis (K. brevis), that makes up red tides off the coast of Florida, can release harmful brevetoxins into the ocean and air, causing massive kills of fish, marine mammals, and sea turtles; and painful burning of the eyes and lungs for beach goers.

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Today's Coastal Factoid

Whale songs have been dropping in pitch, potential causes explored

"Blue and fin whales are among the loudest animals in the oceans as well as the largest. Only males sing, humming about as loud as large ships. The whales’ loud songs can travel more than 1,000 kilometers (600 miles) underwater, allowing the whales to communicate across vast oceans. Blue whales have been dropping pitch incrementally over several decades, but the cause has remained a mystery." - Excerpt from American Geophysical Union. Hypothesized reasons for the reduced pitch include noise traveling more effectively in increasingly acidic waters, whale populations rebounding (less need for long distance communication), and seasonal variations (in the summer, songs must be louder to be heard over crackling icebergs).
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State of the Beach

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The Surfrider Foundation State of the Beach report is our continually-updated assessment of the health of our nation’s beaches. It is intended to empower concerned citizens and coastal managers by giving them the information needed to take action. For over ten years we have been collecting information on beach access, surf zone water quality, beach erosion, beach fill, shoreline structures, beach ecology and surfing areas to get an understanding of the condition of our nation’s beaches and the effectiveness of programs and policies designed to protect them.

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Why Beachapedia?

Beachapedia captures decades of experience and knowledge gained by Surfrider Foundation activists, scientists and staff through hundreds of environmental and educational campaigns on our coasts. By sharing this resource with the public we hope to provide tools and information to help communities make a positive impact on their local beaches. If you would like to contribute please visit this page.

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