The main goal of our invasive species monitoring is to determine which species might be the most likely to come into our area, and where they are most likely to settle. Surveying those target areas on a regular basis will hopefully result in early detection and better odds of eradication before those invaders are firmly established.
Around Kachemak Bay we survey beaches on low tides, heavily encrusted boats or infrastructure as they come into the area or before they are moved to new locations, and anchor lines in Cook Inlet near the Nikiski terminal. Lessons from the lower forty-eight have taught us that moving floating infrastructure around is one of the leading causes of spreading ocean invasive species. Many times harbors are the first place for invasives to settle. Because of this we also hang settling plates in the Homer and Seldovia boat harbors and check to see what has grown on them three times a year. We have been monitoring for invasive species since 2006 and thankfully, although a few have been a few identified from our bay, they have not proven to be multiplying or even easy to find.
On April 18, 2016 KBNERR was contacted by Bruce Webb, Senior VP for Furie Operating Alaska LLC, to conduct a survey to investigate the potential for non-indigenous marine invertebrates or algal species to have been carried on the legs of the jack-up drill rig Randolph Yost and the possibility of these species being introduced into the marine water of Kachemak Bay and Cook Inlet. We agreed to conduct a visual survey of surfaces in representative areas of the legs to look for encrusted or attached marine biota.