Wednesday, October 17, 2018

Eleanora the Octopus Featured In PT Leader

photo by Lily Haight, Port Townsend Leader
Our new resident octopus is featured in the news!

"Eleanora, who is roughly 2 years old, originally came from the area around Whidbey Island. She had been living at the Friday Harbor Laboratories, where she was helping researchers study the intelligence of the Giant Pacific Octopus. Now, Eleanora is a resident of the Port Townsend Marine Science Center aquarium, where she’s being featured in a film that Florian Graner, the underwater documentarian of Sealife Productions, is working on." 

Read more about how PTMSC aquarist Ali Redman and documentarian Florian Graner interact with Eleanora in the Leader's article.

And be sure to come visit Eleanora during exhibit hours; Fridays, Saturdays & Sundays, noon to 5 p.m.

Thanks to Lily Haight at the Port Townsend Leader for the feature.

Tuesday, October 16, 2018

Lecture: The Northwest Coastal Explorer

Sunday, November 11

3 pm

Robert Steelquist
Pacific Northwest writer, photographer,
naturalist, and environmental educator

The Fort Worden Chapel

Admission: $5

(students, teachers FREE)

Robert Steelquist is a native Pacific Northwest writer, naturalist, and environmental educator with a 30-year career introducing young and old to the nature of the Northwest. He has led hundreds on nature walks, backpacking trips, tall ship trainings, river floats, teacher workshops, archaeology field schools, and other outdoor learning adventures. With a practiced eye and patient voice he leads us to see the world around us, understand and experience its wonders. He lives in the foothills of the Olympic Mountains, near Blyn, Washington. His latest book, The Northwest Coastal Explorer, was published by Timber Press in 2016. He served as Education Coordinator for NOAA’s Olympic Coast National Marine Sanctuary until retiring in 2014.

More info:


This is the second installment of The Future of Oceans lecture series.

This event is offered with generous support by the Darrow Family.

Assisted Listening Devices available

Friday, October 5, 2018

Lecture--Swimming Through Swirls: Observing Ribbons and Rings of Ocean Circulation Autonomously

deploying underwater robots
Sunday, October 14

3 pm

Dr. Charles Eriksen
Professor, School of Oceanography, University of Washington
read bio here

The Fort Worden Chapel

Admission: $5

(students, teachers FREE)

Charlie Eriksen has helped change the way the ocean is observed, from top to bottom and shore to shore. His research group invented the Seaglider and Deepglider underwater vehicles. Scarcely six feet long, these autonomous vehicles swim thousands of miles while taking the pulse of ocean circulation: its temperature, salinity, dissolved oxygen, currents and biological properties. Eriksen deploys these robots to examine the undersea world of intense currents, where explosive turbulence and small subsurface waves interact with the global circulation.


This is the first installment of The Future of Oceans lecture series.

This event is offered with generous support by the Darrow Family.

Assisted Listening Devices available

Thursday, October 4, 2018

Give Jefferson: Give Where You Live!

Through programs at the Port Townsend Marine Science Center, kids get excited about science and environmental stewardship. With adequate preparation, high quality science jobs await the next generation.

Journey Orchanian, former PTMSC camper
“Going to a marine science camp was a lot of fun and I know it changed me. I am more confident and I tried new things because of it, like scuba diving and an oceanography class. Now I want to go into marine biology.” 

--Journey Orchanian

PTMSC is a proud 2018 Give Jefferson participant! This campaign is sponsored by the Jefferson Community Foundation and United Good Neighbors and offers people a way to learn about and support the wide variety of nonprofits enriching our county, including the Marine Science Center.

Visit to view the Give Jefferson online Giving Catalog.
Only available for the month of October.

Friday, September 28, 2018

2018 Eleanor Stopps Environmental Leadership Award presented to Eloise Kailin, Sarah Doyle

Port Townsend Marine Science Center honors co-founder of Olympic Environmental Council and stewardship coordinator of North Olympic Salmon Coalition 

On September 28, the Port Townsend Marine Science Center announced co-recipients of the 2018 Eleanor Stopps Environmental Leadership Award: Eloise Kailin, Olympic Environmental Council co-founder, and Sarah Doyle, the stewardship coordinator for the North Olympic Salmon Coalition.

Pictured (left to right): Sarah Doyle; Janine Boire, PTMSC; Darlene Schanfald (representing Eloise Kailin)

The awards were presented at the annual PTMSC Stewardship Breakfast at The Commons at Fort Worden State Park.

The prestigious Eleanor Stopps Environmental Leadership Award recognizes significant contributions in the protection and stewardship of the natural environment of the North Olympic Peninsula. The award, now in its 14th year, pays tribute to Eleanor Stopps, whose vision, advocacy and determination exemplify the power and importance of citizen leadership.

“We are so pleased to honor these two outstanding advocates for the people and the environment of the North Olympic Peninsula,” said PTMSC Executive Director Janine Boire. “As a lifelong activist, still, at the age of 99, Dr. Kailin continues to work tirelessly to advance the health and well-being of our residents and our environment. And Sarah Doyle’s work with our youth, teaching them to be good stewards of the land and sea, inspires each of us to make this world a better place for future generations.”

Monday, September 24, 2018

A Summer of Citizen Stewardship in Protection Island Aquatic Reserve

Submitted to WA Dept. of Natural Resources Aquatic Reserve Newsletter by PTMSC's Citizen Science Coordinator Betsy Carlson:

It was a busy summer in the waters and along the shore of Protection Island Aquatic Reserve (PIAR). Citizen Stewards conducted the first Intertidal Monitoring Project with the Cape George Environmental Committee and Port Townsend Marine Science Center volunteers and staff near Cape George Colony. Eleanor Hines, Michael Kyte and Erica Bleke brought their expertise from Fidalgo Bay and Cherry Point Reserves, to help make this a very successful event. Twenty people participated and recorded 88 species.

Out on the water, Port Townsend Marine Science Center and Puget Sound Express hosted five “Puffin Cruises” for 230 people through Protection Island Aquatic Reserve. (sign up for an upcoming Protection Island cruise here!) One trip took a detour to Smith Island to see a Horned Puffin that had been reported in the area. On their way back, a pod of orcas passed by making it a very memorable evening.

Friday, September 21, 2018

Fall Migration Cruises to Protection Island

2 Dates:

October 6


October 13

Just outside of Port Townsend is an amazing National Wildlife Refuge — Protection Island. Nearly 70 percent of the nesting seabird population of Puget Sound and the Straits nest on the island, which includes one of the largest nesting colonies of rhinoceros auklets in the world and the largest nesting colony of glaucous-winged gulls in Washington. The island contains one of the last two nesting colonies of tufted puffins in the Puget Sound area. About 1,000 harbor seals depend upon the island for a pupping and rest area.

Cruise trips will go through the Protection Island Aquatic Reserve and circumnavigate Protection Island, a National Wildlife Refuge located at the mouth of Discovery Bay. This 364-acre island is covered by grass and low brush, with a small timbered area, high sandy bluffs for seabird nesting, and low sand spits on two ends of the island. 

The Port Townsend Marine Science Center – in collaboration with Puget Sound Express – hosts special expeditions to Protection Island. Cruises are scheduled in spring and fall, timed to coincide with annual migrations, with special trips planned for Thanksgiving weekend and New Years Eve.