Seacrest underwater harvest protection

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Seacrest underwater harvest protection

Postby Cmjstealth » Fri Nov 02, 2012 2:28 pm

Starting this new thread to hopefully separate the discussion around getting legal protection for the Seacrest dive sites. This is NOT the thread for reiterating our love of GPOs or for voicing outrage over Dylan Mayer’s actions on Wednesday (please use viewtopic.php?f=1&t=19454).

It seems to me that the best option proposed so far is something close to a “underwater no-take zone” that:
    -Protects the coves
    -Will not create pushback from non-diving fisherman groups that fish from the pier (is this a real concern?)
    -Won’t alienate club members who like to fish elsewhere in the Puget sound
    -Won’t incite the resistance of the entire fishing industry
    -Easier to implement than a marine reserve (although not sure if this was referring to legal stuff or just because of pushback from above-water fishing folks)
    -If there is interest in creating more broad protection I might personally support it but would love to get get Seacrest protected first. Hate to have nothing because we either couldn’t agree or went to big. Baby steps...

I think the above is the closest we have to a consensus of the group but if I’m off base let me know. I’m more than happy to help with some of the legwork if others can identify where to start.

Laywer: Really appreciate your offer to provide Pro-Bono legal support. Can you recommend where we should start / what to explore?

I assume there are a lot of specifics TBD including:
    -Would this need to be a new ordinance or does a similar form of protection already exist?
    -Would it make more sense to seek a different form of protection that can be more easily adopted (ie: no legislation required - just a designation by an existing regulatory group)
    -How is/should the scope of the protected area defined?
    -Who do we need to engage? Is there other legwork that needs to be completed first?

PMing Kitsapdiver, Grateful Diver, CaptnJack, Sea Goat, fnerg, Joshua Smith, Desert Diver who I noticed as all either supporting the underwater no-take approach or perhaps knew what to do next.
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Re: Seacrest underwater harvest protection

Postby Joshua Smith » Fri Nov 02, 2012 2:56 pm

Thank you for doing this! We had just decided to start a new thread. And I'm at work using my phone to stay current, and a bit pressed for time. I really appreciate you taking the initiative to start this new thread and keep the discussion focused on a positive outcome!
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Re: Seacrest underwater harvest protection

Postby Krake » Fri Nov 02, 2012 3:15 pm

The new thread is great! the no-take approach would also be supported by many of us up north. Please let me know how we can help
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Re: Seacrest underwater harvest protection

Postby lundysd » Fri Nov 02, 2012 3:16 pm

Before anyone gets too deep into these efforts, I want to make it clear that there is a VERY big coordinated effort going on internally right now to make this happen. Lots of people are working hard to present a clear and concise plan, and I'm confident we can get results very soon. We should be able to present this plan in the very near future, but until then hang tight. If you're interested in participating further please contact me at rotdphoto@gmail.com and I will keep you up to date
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Re: Seacrest underwater harvest protection

Postby Emilyrc » Fri Nov 02, 2012 3:22 pm

I'm on board with a no-take for scuba. Fisherman take what they want... From the surface.

I wish I knew how to help with this stuff. As a "northerner" (Skagit Valley) I don't think there's a whole lot I can do other than show up at any future events. If there is something I can help with from up here, please don't hesitate to ask. I have a very flexible work schedule.

Lets also try to keep this a NHZ, if that's okay with CMJstealth
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Re: Seacrest underwater harvest protection

Postby ljjames » Fri Nov 02, 2012 3:30 pm

lundysd wrote:Before anyone gets too deep into these efforts, I want to make it clear that there is a VERY big coordinated effort going on internally right now to make this happen. Lots of people are working hard to present a clear and concise plan, and I'm confident we can get results very soon. We should be able to present this plan in the very near future, but until then hang tight. If you're interested in participating further please contact me at rotdphoto@gmail.com and I will keep you up to date


Outstanding! You have my full support! Thank you (and all involved) for taking the lead in this.
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Re: Seacrest underwater harvest protection

Postby ktb » Fri Nov 02, 2012 4:06 pm

lundysd wrote:Before anyone gets too deep into these efforts, I want to make it clear that there is a VERY big coordinated effort going on internally right now to make this happen. Lots of people are working hard to present a clear and concise plan, and I'm confident we can get results very soon. We should be able to present this plan in the very near future, but until then hang tight. If you're interested in participating further please contact me at rotdphoto@gmail.com and I will keep you up to date


Thank you Scott. You already know you have my support.

I was THRILLED to see this:
http://seattletimes.com/html/fieldnotes ... cation=rss

Quotes from above article:
Outrage over the incident has sparked the department to look into whether fishing regulations that allow hunting octopus to be changed. "This incident has compelled us to look into this, to see if this practice should be allowed," Bartlett said. (previously named as Craig Bartlett, spokesman for the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife) "There are a lot of ethical issues involved with fishing and hunting. It isn't just a biological decision we make here. It's also about what society will tolerate."

Another quote:
Bob Davidson, president and CEO of the Seattle Aquarium said the aquarium, which was active in helping to protect the state's existing marine protected areas, and is going to advocate for protection for Cove 2.

"All indications are that it would be a very suitable addition, and we are going to start putting together the argument right now," Davidson said. "The variety of marine life, the value it has for various communities ... it is important to take a step like this."
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Re: Seacrest underwater harvest protection

Postby Norris » Fri Nov 02, 2012 4:23 pm

ktb wrote:
lundysd wrote:Before anyone gets too deep into these efforts, I want to make it clear that there is a VERY big coordinated effort going on internally right now to make this happen. Lots of people are working hard to present a clear and concise plan, and I'm confident we can get results very soon. We should be able to present this plan in the very near future, but until then hang tight. If you're interested in participating further please contact me at rotdphoto@gmail.com and I will keep you up to date


Thank you Scott. You already know you have my support.

I was THRILLED to see this:
http://seattletimes.com/html/fieldnotes ... cation=rss

Quotes from above article:
Outrage over the incident has sparked the department to look into whether fishing regulations that allow hunting octopus to be changed. "This incident has compelled us to look into this, to see if this practice should be allowed," Bartlett said. (previously named as Craig Bartlett, spokesman for the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife) "There are a lot of ethical issues involved with fishing and hunting. It isn't just a biological decision we make here. It's also about what society will tolerate."

Another quote:
Bob Davidson, president and CEO of the Seattle Aquarium said the aquarium, which was active in helping to protect the state's existing marine protected areas, and is going to advocate for protection for Cove 2.

"All indications are that it would be a very suitable addition, and we are going to start putting together the argument right now," Davidson said. "The variety of marine life, the value it has for various communities ... it is important to take a step like this."


This is awesome! Maybe cut Octo hunting while watching eggs, limit to less than 1 a day (imagining if 100 divers caught their limit each day for 1 month shudder) and have Cove 1 2 and 3 be sanctuaries.
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Re: Seacrest underwater harvest protection

Postby pensacoladiver » Fri Nov 02, 2012 4:47 pm

Norris wrote:
This is awesome! Maybe cut Octo hunting while watching eggs, limit to less than 1 a day (imagining if 100 divers caught their limit each day for 1 month shudder) and have Cove 1 2 and 3 be sanctuaries.


Do the GPO spawn throughout the year or only during a certain time? It would be impossible to enforce a law stating an octo cant be taken while on eggs. However, if they spawn during a certain time, then closure might be a "reasonable" option.

Here in Florida, we are allowed to take NO lobster that is bearing eggs, but that is enforcable as the eggs are attached to the lobsters and FWC can sure as hell tell if some dipshit has scrapped them off. It happens more often that I like to hear about.

Rick, assuming your fears were to be realized, you would be talking about 3,000 octos taken in a one month period. If that were possible at SCUBA depths, I would say you have a VERY healthy octopus population there.

I know of no species of fish (that I care to eat) that I could get one of diving every day for 30 days straight.
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Re: Seacrest underwater harvest protection

Postby Mortuus » Fri Nov 02, 2012 5:01 pm

Full support here, although unfortunately it will have to be in words only, since I know nothing of law and will be all but useless in this effort =P
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Re: Seacrest underwater harvest protection

Postby mcloed121 » Fri Nov 02, 2012 5:24 pm

I want to help in anyway I can too just let me know thanks
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Re: Seacrest underwater harvest protection

Postby Linedog » Fri Nov 02, 2012 5:58 pm

Start with Cove's 1, 2 and 3, then move on to Redondo, Les Davis etc. Once you have your foot in the door . . . .
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Re: Seacrest underwater harvest protection

Postby socaldiver » Fri Nov 02, 2012 6:32 pm

far from me to say our laws are perfect, but consider the laws of california for the take of lobster/abalone.....only certain months, maximum posession, and maximum take per year.....also possibly consider tagging each animal taken with a tag to ensure enforcement....
otherwise, it's up to darwin...
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Re: Seacrest underwater harvest protection

Postby ScubaSamHam » Fri Nov 02, 2012 7:08 pm

pensacoladiver wrote:
Do the GPO spawn throughout the year or only during a certain time? It would be impossible to enforce a law stating an octo cant be taken while on eggs. However, if they spawn during a certain time, then closure might be a "reasonable" option.


"Giant Pacific octopuses breed throughout the year, though spawning peaks in winter. Males may breed with several females, but females mate only once in their lifetime. Over several days, females lay 20,000 to 100,000 rice-shaped eggs (avg. 50,000) in grape-like clusters of 200 to 300 eggs each. These clusters are hung from the ceiling of the den. Females remain with the eggs throughout the entire brooding period, guarding them from predators and using her syphon to aerate and clean the clusters. Hatching can take anywhere from 150 days to almost 1 year depending on water temperature. Cooler temperatures delay the development of the embryo and therefore lengthen incubation time. (Anderson, et al., 2002; High, 1976; Kubodera, 1991; "North Pacific giant octopus (Enteroctopus dofleini)", 2010)"

So, while there is a peak spawning (mating) season per se, the egg-bearing stage is not seasonal, and could last a whole year (so, octopus mamas anywhere could be on eggs anytime)... therefore, unless its possible to tell if a female has layed eggs in the past by simple visual cues, or if the females show signs of recent egg bearing (doubtful, hard to confirm once captured), then NO. seasonal spawning closures would not work.

I think the solution, as many have pointed out, is to get no underwater take of octos. There is existing policy for this sort of fishing restriction (only on snorkel, and far from the coast) in Bermuda. Although this is the reverse - everything except scuba allowed - it is possible and may offer clues.

THANK YOU for closing the previous thread. and THANK YOU for continuing your concerted efforts. I will contact you, Lundy, to offer my assistance.
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Re: Seacrest underwater harvest protection

Postby pensacoladiver » Fri Nov 02, 2012 7:27 pm

It has been 2 years since I have reviewed Washington fishing regs, but I seem to recall there being no such verbiage about "no underwater take zones" or anything of the like. Not saying it woud be impossible to get it created, but I think it would certainly be easier to develop something within the existing laws.

We do have something similar here in Florida... the Blue Heron Bridge. you can dive it all you want but can't hunt, but there are fisherman all over it.

Not sure if it was ever designated an underwater sanctuary, but there is a lew here in florida that prevents hunting within 300 feet of a fishing pier.

I think it's 300 feet, might be 100 feet... I can't remember and I dont hunt from shore anyways.

Just food for thought.
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Re: Seacrest underwater harvest protection

Postby Joshua Smith » Fri Nov 02, 2012 7:56 pm

pensacoladiver wrote:It has been 2 years since I have reviewed Washington fishing regs, but I seem to recall there being no such verbiage about "no underwater take zones" or anything of the like. Not saying it woud be impossible to get it created, but I think it would certainly be easier to develop something within the existing laws.

We do have something similar here in Florida... the Blue Heron Bridge. you can dive it all you want but can't hunt, but there are fisherman all over it.

Not sure if it was ever designated an underwater sanctuary, but there is a lew here in florida that prevents hunting within 300 feet of a fishing pier.

I think it's 300 feet, might be 100 feet... I can't remember and I dont hunt from shore anyways.

Just food for thought.

We appear to have several no take zones, such as Edmonds Underwater Park and Hood Canal. Sounds as if this one wont be hard to get done, since the aquarium got on board.
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Re: Seacrest underwater harvest protection

Postby Norris » Fri Nov 02, 2012 7:58 pm

pensacoladiver wrote:
Norris wrote:
This is awesome! Maybe cut Octo hunting while watching eggs, limit to less than 1 a day (imagining if 100 divers caught their limit each day for 1 month shudder) and have Cove 1 2 and 3 be sanctuaries.


Do the GPO spawn throughout the year or only during a certain time? It would be impossible to enforce a law stating an octo cant be taken while on eggs. However, if they spawn during a certain time, then closure might be a "reasonable" option.

Here in Florida, we are allowed to take NO lobster that is bearing eggs, but that is enforcable as the eggs are attached to the lobsters and FWC can sure as hell tell if some dipshit has scrapped them off. It happens more often that I like to hear about.

Rick, assuming your fears were to be realized, you would be talking about 3,000 octos taken in a one month period. If that were possible at SCUBA depths, I would say you have a VERY healthy octopus population there.

I know of no species of fish (that I care to eat) that I could get one of diving every day for 30 days straight.


Mind you I am not a hunter nor do I have anything against responsible hunting. I was tossing ideas out from a fleeting thought. You are most likely right about enforcement of the mother octopus hunting and I am no way trying to debate. For what it's worth I believe that the coves could be added to the no take zone and I would endorse it. I would not endorse making it illegal to hunt Octos which are not endangered or reaching instinction.
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Re: Seacrest underwater harvest protection

Postby LCF » Fri Nov 02, 2012 8:06 pm

I think one of the first questions to answer is what regulatory body has the power to do this. If we can get it done through the City of Seattle as a part of the SeaCrest Park regulations, that's probably pretty easy. If it requires action through the state Fish and Game agency, that's probably quite a bit more complex and difficult. Does anybody know? Edmonds Underwater Park is a no-take zone -- whose regulations created that?
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Re: Seacrest underwater harvest protection

Postby pensacoladiver » Fri Nov 02, 2012 8:12 pm

Can you fish at Edmonds? Can a boat drop anchor in there and fish?
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Re: Seacrest underwater harvest protection

Postby LCF » Fri Nov 02, 2012 8:27 pm

Boats are forbidden within the Edmonds Underwater Park. (That's the regulation about "watercraft" that has been interpreted as forbidding scooters, too . . . )
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Re: Seacrest underwater harvest protection

Postby Grateful Diver » Fri Nov 02, 2012 8:45 pm

pensacoladiver wrote:Can you fish at Edmonds? Can a boat drop anchor in there and fish?


All watercraft are forbidden inside the park ... including divers on scooters.

But let's not cloud the issue ... that is a City ordinance, and not something dictated by the state.

As a Marine Preserve, fishing of all types is forbidden.

I did once see a boat tied up to one of the boundary buoys, with fishermen casting into the park. They know there are large and plentiful ling cod in there ... but they also better hope the fish & game folks don't see 'em doing it.

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Re: Seacrest underwater harvest protection

Postby seainggreen » Fri Nov 02, 2012 9:17 pm

As I said on the other threads, I am happy to help out in whatever manner I can, from fundraising, to donating footage, to volunteering my writing services, to whatever. Please let me know how I can help.

So glad to see that an organized effort is underway. This is the only way to effect positive, sustainable changes that we need to protect our favorite diving sites and animals. The power of a well-organized passionate group always wins out over an individual effort. Many hands will make this important work easier. Thanks, Scott.

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Re: Seacrest underwater harvest protection

Postby CaptnJack » Fri Nov 02, 2012 9:46 pm

Washington absolutely has Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) sometimes for all species, sometimes for selected species, and sometimes just limiting gear types. So a "no harvesting GPOs by scuba or snorkeling/free diving" in some defined area has plenty of precedent. As would "no harvest of GPOs statewide", 6 gill and wolf eels are examples of statewide closed fisheries.
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Re: Seacrest underwater harvest protection

Postby nwscubamom » Fri Nov 02, 2012 9:58 pm

It's up! The petition to provide protection for the Giant Pacific Octopus at Seattle's Alki Cove 2 dive site is now posted on the Dive News Network's website. Take a moment to read the petition and sign if you are interested, and be sure to include your comments.
http://www.divenewsnetwork.com/index.ph ... ve-the-gpo

Also spread the word with your friends, dive clubs, shops, other dive forums, etc.: Divers and non-divers alike!

Thanks go to the many (especially Scott Lundy and the folks at Dive News Network) who have worked fast and hard to get this petition up and running. :joshsmith:

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Re: Seacrest underwater harvest protection

Postby Mortuus » Fri Nov 02, 2012 10:05 pm

nwscubamom wrote:It's up! The petition to provide protection for the Giant Pacific Octopus at Seattle's Alki Cove 2 dive site is now posted on the Dive News Network's website. Take a moment to read the petition and sign if you are interested, and be sure to include your comments.
http://www.divenewsnetwork.com/index.ph ... ve-the-gpo

Also spread the word with your friends, dive clubs, shops, other dive forums, etc.: Divers and non-divers alike!

Thanks go to the many (especially Scott Lundy and the folks at Dive News Network) who have worked fast and hard to get this petition up and running. :joshsmith:

- Janna


Cool! Signed!
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