Ellen Steen

Ellen Steen

Many thanks to Margaret Tweelinckx for calling with the news that Gloria Languedoc, former resident of Cape Meares, has sold her house in Beaverton and moved to an assisted living facility in Hillsboro. Gloria loved her years in Cape Meares and was an active participant in the artists’ community here. If you would like to send a card or note to her new home, Marg is sure Gloria would appreciate it. Her mailing address is as follows: Gloria Languedoc, The Springs at Tanasbourne, 1950 NE 102nd Ave. Unit #252, Hillsboro OR, 97006.

My husband, Pete, and I were out beachcombing on Jan. 5 when we saw something odd in the surf. A seagull was sitting on an object. It was too big to be a fish and too floppy to be a log. Was it a seal? We walked closer. It turned out to be a dead sea otter! That was the first sea otter we have ever seen north of Monterey Bay, Calif.

Knowing it was a find that Jim Rice, Stranding Coordinator for Oregon State University, would want to know about, we took pictures and Pete texted them to Jim. Jim was excited; sea otters are very rare in our area. Could we secure it for him to collect? Unfortunately, we weren’t able to take another hike out on the spit that day, but Cape Meares resident Olli Ollikainen came to the rescue. He and Jim collected the animal, estimated to be about 80 pounds, and put it on a sled. They then pulled the sled up the big sand dune and along the trail to the parking lot. Jim said it looked as if a shark had bitten the sea otter. He took it back to OSU’s veterinary lab for further study. We will check with Jim later to find out the necropsy results; I’ll report back to you Fencepost readers when I learn more.

If you find a live or dead marine mammal on the beach, contact Jim Rice at OSU. His cell phone is 541-270-6830, his office number is 541-867-0446, and his e-mail address is jim.rice@oregonstate.edu. Be a citizen scientist!

In a last nod to the holidays, cheers to Anita and Keith Johanson and Carolyn and Olli Ollikainen on their recent trip to Victoria, British Columbia.  The Empress Hotel was a glorious sight, ablaze with Christmas lights. The two couples did a lot of walking around the inner harbor as well as along the strait. They ate hearty meals in English and Irish pubs. What a memorable way to celebrate the season!

Snow is in the forecast for Cape Meares as I write this. Snow on the beach is such an amazing sight; I sure hope we get some!

Don’t forget to tune in to OPB tomorrow night, Jan. 16, at 8:30 p.m. to watch the new documentary on the city of Bayocean. It’s entitled “Lost City of Bayocean.” Bayocean is like the tombs in Egypt; no matter how much time has passed, there’s always something new to discover.

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