Thursday, November 29, 2012

Curtis Cove Report - Nov 10, 2012

Saturday, November 10. 1:45PM, just past low tide. Beautiful slack water, with barely a ripple kissing the soft mud at the lowest foreshore.
A week now after Superstorm Sandy, and the high foreshore was still a cliff of wrack, wrack, and wrack.
But much of the storm's cast-up sand and mud was oozing back toward the sea. Burying many of the low foreshore cobbles, and leaving ephemeral beauty in its wake.
Higher up the slope, other things were left.
This was a week of high-energy waves meeting a steepened beach face, and the two trying to work out some new meeting of minds. Most of the debris had been dumped & pushed high up onto the foreshore, and was big & bulky like that SOLO cup. Very little small stuff managed to settle out, high or low.

Here's what I found:
124 pcs of rope, about 250 ft total
57 pcs of nonrope debris
181 finds:
  • Bldg material/furniture: 1 (toilet seat rim)
  • Foam/styrofoam: 0
  • Fishing rope/net: 124
  • Fishing misc.: 21 (10 bait bags, 5 trap tags, 3 trap parts, vent, bumper, vinyl coating)
  • Food-related plastics: 14 (old, dragged bottle, bottle cap, cap o-ring, cap seal, cap scrap, 3 PS cup scraps, 3 food wrappers, cookie tub, spoon)
  • Food-related glass/metal: 1 (bottlecap)
  • Nonfood/unknown plastics: 11 (7 baggies/scraps, sleeve/grommet, 2 strapping, crate seal)
  • Scrap plastics: 9 (6 > 1" , 3 < 1" )
  • Paper/wood: 0
  • Non-plastic misc./unique: 1 (fabric scrap)
This is the signature of a beach still in the grip of Sandy's aftermath. It's not the amount of debris, but the size of the pieces. And it's not the usual dense seabottom flecks, but lighter, bulkier, buoyant material hurled over the distant rocks at the head of the cove. 77% directly related to the lobstering industry. More of the Gulf of Maine's lasting legacy.

Running YTD counts:
  • Total pcs of litter -- 10667
  • Pcs fishing rope -- 2487
  • Vinyl lobster-trap scraps -- 4564

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