WEATHER IN LINCOLN COUNTY

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Murre seabird population taking a huge hit off the Oregon and California Coast


A Murre family
Wikipedia photo

Murre seabirds are taking a beating up and down the west coast as what were once threatened or endangered species have made a huge comeback thanks to the protections that were given them. Brown Pelicans along with crows, seagulls and ravens are now raiding Murre nesting and brood areas like Flat Top Rock and Colony Rock just north of Newport.

Earlier this week a wave of young brown pelicans flew up the Oregon Coast to Yaquina Head and decimated thousands of Murres raising their young on the big rocks just offshore from the lighthouse. The invading pelicans grabbed and shook young birds that had just been fed fish by their parents. The birds regurgitated their meal which was then re-eaten by the pelicans. Many Murre parents were frightened off and their offspring, which were not quite ready to fly, were either forced or fled over the cliffs to a watery death, either from hypothermia or being crushed by waves against the rocks. Their bodies have been washing up on Agate and Nye Beaches just to the south.

More on the plight of the Murres is in this video.

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