April 28, 2022

New Staff and a New Phase for North Coast Kelp Restoration Project

Story and Photos: Morgan Murphy-Cannella, Reef Check Kelp Restoration Coordinator

Restoration Technicians Ian Butler and Lauren Nutt

We proudly announce that we have added two new members to the Reef Check team, Ian Butler and Lauren Nutt. Ian and Lauren are the new Restoration Technicians based in Northern California and will be assisting the ongoing kelp restoration project based in Mendocino County. The restoration project started in 2020 in collaboration with the Ocean Protection Council (OPC), California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW), and the commercial urchin divers of Fort Bragg. Together, we have successfully removed over 40,000 lbs of purple urchin from two designated restoration areas: Noyo Bay and Albion Cove. We have seen early signs of success, and we are highlighting our findings in a full report that will be submitted to OPC later this month. Stay tuned for more information on results! 

Now we are entering Phase 2 of the restoration project with a new collaboration with The Nature Conservancy (TNC), who is exploring how urchin traps can assist in kelp restoration and urchin removals. Reef Check will be monitoring this effort in various locations in Mendocino County.