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Washington State’s Endangered Tufted Puffins

May 25, 2022 @ 7:00 pm - 8:30 pm

Washington State’s Endangered Tufted Puffins

Hosted by the North Cascades Institute

Instructor: Amanda Colbert

Cost: $10

To register for this event click here.

“Tufted puffins are striking birds in the auk family,” explains the UW’s Puget Sound Institute. “With their two congeners, the horned and Atlantic puffin, they are sometimes called sea parrots, or the clowns of the sea. The sea clowns, alas, have become increasingly rare of late… all up and down the West Coast. In Washington, tufted puffins were once common in the Strait of Juan de Fuca and along the outer coast, with 25,000 birds spread among 44 known breeding colonies in the early 1900s. Those numbers stayed stable for the next several decades; surveys in the 1970s and 1980s estimated more than 23,000 birds bred at 35 known colonies. Then the bottom started to fall out. By 2009 biologists estimated that fewer than 3,000 puffins bred in Washington, and the number of known colonies had fallen to just 19. Counts since then have only gotten worse.”

The Salish Sea School is on a mission to help save Washington State’s endangered Tufted Puffin population. By empowering students to help with data collection at Smith Island (one of the last breeding colonies in the Salish Sea) and promoting stewardship through experiential marine conservation programs and public presentations, the aim is to increase public awareness of this population and provide ways to help recover these imperiled seabirds.

Join us as we share the natural life history of the Tufted Puffin and discuss the state status of this iconic seabird. We’ll take you on a journey of discovery, sharing what we have seen on the water and learned through our own observations over the last two seasons. We’ll also provide ways you can help these iconic seabirds!


May 25, 2022
7:00 pm - 8:30 pm

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