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Open-File Report 2009–1218

Prepared in cooperation with Puget Sound Nearshore Ecosystem Restoration Project

Extended Abstracts from the Coastal Habitats in Puget Sound (CHIPS) 2006 Workshop

Edited by Guy Gelfenbaum, Tracy L. Fuentes, Jeffrey J. Duda, Eric E. Grossman, and Renee K. Takesue

Introduction

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Puget Sound is the second largest estuary in the United States. Its unique geology, climate, and nutrient-rich waters produce and sustain biologically productive coastal habitats. These same natural characteristics also contribute to a high quality of life that has led to a significant growth in human population and associated development. This population growth, and the accompanying rural and urban development, has played a role in degrading Puget Sound ecosystems, including declines in fish and wildlife populations, water-quality issues, and loss and degradation of coastal habitats.

In response to these ecosystem declines and the potential for strategic large-scale preservation and restoration, a coalition of local, State, and Federal agencies, including the private sector, Tribes, and local universities, initiated the Puget Sound Nearshore Ecosystem Restoration Project (PSNERP). The Nearshore Science Team (NST) of PSNERP, along with the U.S. Geological Survey, developed a Science Strategy and Research Plan (Gelfenbaum and others, 2006) to help guide science activities associated with nearshore ecosystem restoration. Implementation of the Research Plan includes a call for State and Federal agencies to direct scientific studies to support PSNERP information needs. In addition, the overall Science Strategy promotes greater communication with decision makers and dissemination of scientific results to the broader scientific community.

On November 14–16, 2006, the U.S. Geological Survey sponsored an interdisciplinary Coastal Habitats in Puget Sound (CHIPS) Research Workshop at Fort Worden State Park, Port Townsend, Washington. The main goals of the workshop were to coordinate, integrate, and link research on the nearshore of Puget Sound. Presented research focused on three themes: (1) restoration of large river deltas; (2) recovery of the nearshore ecosystem of the Elwha River; and (3) effects of urbanization on nearshore ecosystems. The more than 35 presentations covered a wide range of ongoing inter-disciplinary research, including studies of sediment geochemistry of aquatic environments, sediment budgets, tracking fish pathways, expansion of invasive forams, beach and nearshore sedimentary environments, using influence diagrams as a decision support tool, forage fish, submarine groundwater, and much, much more.

The primary focus within these themes was on developing information on the physical, chemical, and biological processes, as well as the human dimensions, associated with the restoration or rehabilitation of the nearshore environment. The workshop was an excellent opportunity for USGS scientists and collaborators who are working on Puget Sound coastal habitats to present their preliminary findings, discuss upcoming research, and to identify opportunities for interdisciplinary collaboration.

A compilation of extended abstracts from workshop participants, this proceedings volume serves as a useful reference for attendees of the workshop and for those unable to attend. Taken together, the abstracts in this report provide a view of the current status of USGS multidisciplinary research on Puget Sound coastal habitats.

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Suggested citation:

Gelfenbaum, G., Fuentes, T.L., Duda, J.J., Grossman, E.E., and Takesue, R.K., eds., 2009, Extended abstracts from the Coastal Habitats in Puget Sound (CHIPS) 2006 Workshop, Port Townsend, Washington, November 14–16, 2006: U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 2009-1218, 136 p.



Contents

Introduction

Restoration of Large River Deltas—Project Overview

Using Influence Diagrams to Structure Skagit Restoration Conceptual Models

Incorporating Stakeholder Preferences into Decision-Making on Skagit River Delta Restoration

Characterizing Modern Nearshore Habitats and Physical Processes Influencing Habitat Availability near the Skagit River Delta

Suspended Sediment Transport in the Skagit River Delta—Recent Measurements

Conceptual Models of Nitrate and Pesticides Sources and Their Cycling in Aquatic Environments

Sediment Geochemistry in Skagit Eelgrass Beds

Organic Matter Composition of Sediment in Nearshore Ecosystems of Puget Sound, Washington

Habitat Use and Timing by Bull Trout in Marine Waters of Northern Puget Sound, Washington

Historical Changes in Delta Sedimentary Environments

Arrival and Expansion of the Invasive Foraminifer Trochammina hadai Uchio in Padilla Bay, Washington

A Multi-Index Biomarker Approach to Understanding the Paleo-Occurrence of Eelgrass (Zostera marina) in the Nearshore of Puget Sound, Washington

Developing Models of Restoration Impacts to Nearshore Systems

Consequences of the Elwha River Dam Removal on Nearshore Habitats and Ecosystems—Project Overview

Beach and Nearshore Sedimentary Environments—Elwha River, Washington

Linking Puget Sound Rivers to the Nearshore: Physical Processes and Nutrient Dynamics in the Lower Elwha River

Evaluating Fish Responses to Removal of the Elwha River Dams in Shallow Water Coastal Habitats Adjacent to the Elwha River Mouth

Using Otolith Analysis to Establish Habitat Use Patterns of Migrating Juvenile Chinook Salmon in the Elwha River

Monitoring Sediment and Channel Geometry on the Lower Elwha River, Washington, in Preparation for Dam Removal

Effects of Urbanization on Nearshore Processes and Ecosystems: Liberty Bay

Urban Metrics Correlated with Reduced Herring Spawn in Liberty Bay and Port Orchard, Puget Sound, Washington

Temporal Variability in Salinity, Temperature, and Chlorophyll a in Liberty Bay, Washington

Eelgrass, Bottom Sediment, Nutrients, and Wastewater Contaminants in Liberty Bay, Washington

Tracking Wastewater Inputs and Trophic Dynamics with Stable Isotopes in Liberty Bay, Washington

Coastal Habitats in Puget Sound (CHIPS) Urbanization Task FY07 Research Plans

Nearshore Sediment Dynamics at Possession Point, Whidbey Island, Washington

Marine Fish Health Research at the Marrowstone Marine Field Station, Nordland, Washington

Dissolved Inorganic Loads to Lynch Cove, Hood Canal, Washington

A Geochemical and Geophysical Examination of Submarine Groundwater Discharge and Associated Nutrient Loading Estimates into Lynch Cove, Hood Canal, Washington

Integrated Landscape Monitoring in the Puget Sound

Long-Term Hydrodynamic and Morphological Modeling for the Deschutes River Estuary Feasibility Study, Washington

Recent Science-Based Restoration Planning by Puget Sound Nearshore Ecosystem Restoration Project (PSNERP)

Nearshore Habitat Program of the Washington Department of Natural Resources


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