Hundreds of a small, blue-footed seabird called the Cassin’s auklet have been washing up dead on Northwest beaches. So far, scientists don’t know exactly why.
Diane Bilderback is a volunteer with COASST, a University of Washington citizen science project. Until this fall, she had found very few Cassin’s auklets washed ashore.
A bit farther up the coast, near North Bend, Ken and Cathy Denton were seeing similar numbers of dead auklets.
“We’ve seen a lot of common murres, but those are common,” Ken Denton said. “This is the most we’ve seen of something else.”