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General News · 26th May 2021
Hakai Institute - Kelly
Calling all beachcombers, nature-lovers, and community scientists! The Hakai Institute and the Friends of Cortes Island Society (FOCI) are asking for your help to document sea stars in the Discovery Islands this summer. With a stretch of great afternoon low tides in this final week of May, it’s the perfect time to get involved!

Sea stars are still being impacted by sea star wasting, but some populations are recovering. Your observations will help Hakai, FOCI, and sea star researchers all along the West Coast as we monitor the health of sea stars to better understand the extent of sea star wasting syndrome. The more eyes we can get on the ground (or in the water) the better!

If you spot sea stars of any species—healthy or diseased—while out exploring the shore, simply snap a few photos and share your observations to the online community science platform iNaturalist at your convenience. You don’t even need to know which species you’ve found: the iNaturalist AI system and its community of naturalists will help you identify your many-armed finds.

Join our Sea Star Monitoring in the Discovery Islands project page to learn more, see recent observations, and get regular updates.

Want to get more involved? Pick a shoreline to monitor monthly on low tide beach walks, starting this week! The best lows are from Wednesday May 26 to Saturday May 29 in the early to mid afternoon.

Contact Kelly Fretwell at for more information or with any questions about this project or iNaturalist.

More information:
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Top photo: Grant Callegari/Hakai Institute