Art Installation available for long term display

Click on the words “Art Installation available for long term display” above to see this entire post.

These five handmade meta-bottles are available for long term display or purchase to the right organization.

Created from plastic bottle trash collected from the beaches of Point Reyes, they stand nine ft tall and are each 32 inches in diameter. Tip-resistant four foot x four foot marine-grade, sealed plywood bases for indoor or outdoor display as well as informative signage are included.

Humans need to reduce our avoidable dependence on single use plastic. This well-crafted art installation is an excellent way to inform society of the harm we are doing to the planet.

Contact me about purchase or long term display.

Original bottles on display on Drakes Beach.

Rebuilt bottles on display at Bioneers Conference.

Fishing Vessel American Challenger runs aground on Marin coast

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Saturdy 6 March the 31 meter long FV American Challenger ran aground on the Marin coast between Estero Americano and Estero San Antonio.

So far the ship remains intact. An unknown amount of petroleum product has leaked out, though it is not known how much diesel was in the 7000 gallon capacity tanks.

The latest information may be found here

Below are images I made showing the wreck site, as well as efforts to protect the commercial oyster/clam/mussel beds in Tomales Bay, just 6 miles SSE of the wreck site.

Those of us who spend considerable time and energy cleaning up after the many shipwrecks that happen along our coast sincerely hope that the authorities will track down those responsible for this avoidable situation and ensure they pay the bill to clean up this mess. Simply pumping the fuel and lubricants off the ship and walking away, leaving the HUGE debris pile to come is NOT adequate.

All images and video are ©Richard James and may NOT be used or linked to without written permission by the photographer (info@ocastodian.org).

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Coho salmon are back to spawn in Lagunitas Creek

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Recent rains have allowed salmon to return the creek they were born in to continue the cycle of life and beauty they represent.

Please consider making a year-end donation to support continued production of such recordings as well as coastal cleanup and consumer education to protect the creeks and oceans critical to humans and salmon alike.

Click the white rectangle shape in the lower right corner of the video windo to enlarge the video size.

Enjoy and may 2021 be a bright new year.

Please wear your mask when visiting the creeks to observe the fish.

Air tankers scooping water from Tomales Bay to drop on Woodward fire

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oday Friday (21 August) and Saturday (22 August) for over an hour two planes skimmed the surface of the bay, filling their tanks. Each then wheeled east, then south to head towards the Woodward fire.
These images and video recorded from Chicken Ranch Beach.

All images and video ©Richard James

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Jellyfish attack Bodega Bay Boat House Restaurant

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We all know the ocean is in trouble these days, warming water, algal blooms, acidification, and now a swarm of plastic jellyfish have invaded long time favorite The Boat House.

These jellies were made from Korean made plastic fishing net floats that washed ashore on Point Reyes National Seashore beaches. The tentacles are fashioned from crab fishing rope that washes ashore constantly as well.

Since all the plastic trash we humans fill the ocean with (9 million metric tons each year and growing) is deconstructing the ocean as we know it, I decided to deconstruct some of the marine trash and build some plastic reminders of what we are doing to the planet.

You can make one of these jellies yours with a donation of $40 or more.

Stop by The Boat House any day from 11:30 – 7:00 for some of their famous fish & chips, clam chowder, coleslaw or any of their other delicious dishes. Lots of cold beverages to choose from as well.

They offer take out or dine in service with appropriate mask and distancing protocols to ensure your safety.

The Boat House is located on route 1 in Bodega Bay at – 1445 CA-1, Bodega Bay, CA 94923, across the road from Bodega Bay Grange building.
You can also book a fishing trip aboard the world famous New Sea Angler.

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Commercial crab season (and crab gear season) in full swing

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For several weeks in October and November I walked 10 Mile beach and Drakes Beach often to pick up all the crab gear I could find.

I wanted to clear the beaches of gear from past seasons so that I could be sure that once this season started, I’d be fairly certain that any gear washing ashore was from this season.

Crab should cost twice what it does, with half of it going to pay those that clean up after the commercial (and sport) fishing fleets.

Such stewardship. Sigh.

Everything you see below was collected from Point Reyes Beaches from 16 December, 2019 – 3 January, 2020.

More here, and here.

Click an image to see a larger version

Support clean beaches by donating

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Municipal Regional Stormwater NPDES Permit – Oakland

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The images below are a small selection of the images I have recorded over the past three years in Oakland that show the huge problem of municipal trash. Much, not all, of this trash originates at homeless camps around Oakland. Much of this debris is plastic and ends up in San Francisco Bay.

Since 2009 I have collected nearly 7 tons of trash off the beaches of West Marin and from Tomales Bay.

Each winter I collect a few dozen, sometimes more, dirty syringes that have washed up on the beaches of Point Reyes National Seashore, including but not limited to Limantour, Drakes, South, North, Kehoe and McClures beaches.

Since 2016 I have been visiting Lake Merritt and other locations in and around the western edges of Richmond, Albany, Berkeley and Oakland in search of the source of these needles.

I’ve collected thousands of needles from in and around the homeless camps in these communities. I’ve also learned that needle exchanges are not actually exchanges. For example, The Berkeley Needle Exchange will hand out 600 needles to anyone that asks, with no need to turn in a single dirty needle. I believe this is wrong and is responsible for the horrid amount of syringe litter that blights our cities and waterways.

Here is a short video recorded during the heavy rain on 7 December, 2019 at Lake Merritt.
One can see the failing containment boom at Glen echo allowing debris to slip past in the high flows.
At Trestle Glen, the smell of oil / gas on the water was nauseating and very noticeable on the surface.

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Click on an image to see a larger version.

2016

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2017

Street trash washed into Lake Merritt on 16 November, 2017

Street trash washed into Lake Merritt on 16 November, 2017

Street trash washed into Lake Merritt on 16 November, 2017

Street trash washed into Lake Merritt on 16 November, 2017

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2018

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2019

Broken boom leaks debris at Glen Echo

Municipal Regional Stormwater NPDES Permit – Berkeley

Click on the words above “Municipal Regional Stormwater NPDES Permit – Berkeley” to see this entire post

The images below are a small selection of the images I have recorded over the past three years in Berkeley that show the huge problem of municipal trash. Much, though not all of this trash originates at homeless camps around Berkeley. Much of this debris is plastic and ends up in San Francisco Bay.

Since 2009 I have collected nearly 7 tons of trash off the beaches of West Marin and from Tomales Bay.

Each winter I collect a few dozen, sometimes more, dirty syringes that have washed up on the beaches of Point Reyes National Seashore, including but not limited to Limantour, Drakes, South, North, Kehoe and McClures beaches.

Since 2016 I have been visiting Lake Merritt and other locations in and around the western edges of Richmond, Albany, Berkeley and Oakland in search of the source of these needles.

I’ve collected thousands of needles from in and around the homeless camps in these communities. I’ve also learned that needle exchanges are not actually exchanges. For example, The Berkeley Needle Exchange will hand out 600 needles to anyone that asks, with no need to turn in a single dirty needle. I believe this is wrong and is responsible for the horrid amount of syringe litter that blights our cities and waterways.

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Click on an image to see a larger version.

Codornices Creek – Border between Albany and Berkeley near Interstate 80

Gilman at 80



SeaBreeze / University camps area at 80

Ashby Beach – where Ashby intersect West Frontage at SF Bay

Whales off Point Reyes send message to delay crab season

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While recreationally crab and rock fishing off the Point Reyes beach this past Monday the 18th of November I was witness to some amazing whale activity I’d never before seen.

At least three whales (Humpback?) were repeatedly and rapidly slapping the surface of the sea with their tales.

Maybe they could sense that soon, many thousands of heavy traps with ropes and buoys were about to be dropped into the sea where they feed.

Maybe they were letting us recreational crab fishermen know that human activity takes a huge toll on whales and other marine life.

Whether it be from the millions of pounds of plastic humans dump into the sea each year, or, the deep cuts into their flesh when they and their relatives get tangled up in the ropes used to tether traps to buoys.

I tend to think they were sending a message to us. Are we listening?

Thankfully the CDFW and commercial crabbers got the message and pushed back the day when up to 170,000 traps with thousands of miles of plastic rope and hundreds of thousands of buoys are repeatedly dropped in the sea in search of dungeness crab.

Support clean coasts and oceans by supporting your coastodian.

Click on an image to see a larger version.
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Whales slap the surface of the sea off Point Reyes on 18 November, 2019. ©Richard James – coastodian.org

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Whales slap the surface of the sea off Point Reyes on 18 November, 2019. ©Richard James – coastodian.org

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Whales slap the surface of the sea off Point Reyes on 18 November, 2019. ©Richard James – coastodian.org

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Whales slap the surface of the sea off Point Reyes on 18 November, 2019. ©Richard James – coastodian.org

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Whales slap the surface of the sea off Point Reyes on 18 November, 2019. ©Richard James – coastodian.org

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Whales slap the surface of the sea off Point Reyes on 18 November, 2019. ©Richard James – coastodian.org

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Whales slap the surface of the sea off Point Reyes on 18 November, 2019. ©Richard James – coastodian.org

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Whales slap the surface of the sea off Point Reyes on 18 November, 2019. ©Richard James – coastodian.org

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Whales slap the surface of the sea off Point Reyes on 18 November, 2019. ©Richard James – coastodian.org

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