Ecola Long-Term trends | MARINe

Ecola Long-Term trends

See below for trend graphs

In order to standardize species resolution across all MARINe groups, and over time, some species (typically rare) were lumped for graphical presentation of Long-Term monitoring data. See lumped categories for definitions (some variation occurs between methods and over time). Due to funding constraints, counts of motile invertebrates within plots at Oregon sites ended in 2012.

Barnacle cover in the barnacle plots at Ecola fluctuated between about 60%-90%, and plots were dominated by the acorn barnacle, Balanus glandula. Mussel cover in Mytilus plots was quite high (around 90%) and stable from 2001-2008, but then experienced a decline in 2009, largely due to a near-complete loss of mussels in one plot, and a loss of about 50% of the mussels in a second plot. As of 2014, mussel cover had recovered to original levels. Pelvetiopsis cover in its target plots was relatively low (typically below 50%), and varied inversely with cover of barnacles. Plots targeting Neorhodomela experienced a gradual decline in cover of the red alga over time as Phyllospadix abundance increased in these plots. Neorhodomela plots have been photographed, but not sampled since 2015 due to a reduction in funding. Limpets and littorines are the most common motile invertebrates in most plot types. Other key motile invertebrates include Nucella in mussel and Pelvetiopsis plots, and Tegula funebralis in Neorhodomela plots.

Two transect types are present at Ecola, Saccharina (formerly Hedophyllum) and Phyllospadix. Hedophyllum was quite variable over time, with high cover between 2001-2004, followed by a near disappearance of the brown alga in 2005. 2006-2009 was a period of recovery, which in more recent years has been followed by fluctuations around a mean of about 45% cover. Cover of both surfgrass and the red alga, Mazzaella, has increased during periods of low Saccharina abundance. In the surfgrass transects, cover of Phyllospadix initially increased, but has been fairly stable since 2003. 

Ochre star counts fluctuated substantially over time, but as with several other Oregon sites, numbers were down in 2014 and 2015 due to Sea Star Wasting Syndrome. Large numbers of juveniles (<50 mm radius) were counted in 2016-2018, which we had hoped would translate to strong recovery, but it appears that most ochre stars did not survive because numbers were down again in 2019.

Photo Plots

Long-Term methods Photo Plot thumbnail

Below are the trends observed for each Photo Plot target species at this site. Long-Term percent cover trend graphs also include any species that reached a minimum of 25% cover during any single point in time within a given target species assemblage. Breaks in trend lines represent missed sampling events. For additional species observed that did not meet this 25% threshold, please use the Interactive Map.

For motile invertebrate Species Counts, a mean across all plots was calculated, and only those species with a value of at least 5 individuals for at least one sample are shown. Due to time constraints, motile invertebrate counts have not been done at most sites since 2012. For motile invertebrate size trend graphs by site, please use the Interactive Map.

Chthamalus/Balanus (Acorn Barnacles) - percent cover

Ecola barnacle trend plot

Chthamalus/Balanus (Acorn Barnacles) - motile invertebrate counts

Ecola barnacle trend plot

Mytilus (California Mussel) - percent cover

Ecola Mytilus trend plot

Mytilus (California Mussel) - motile invertebrate counts

Ecola Mytilus trend plot

Pelvetiopsis (Dwarf Rockweed) - percent cover

Ecola Pelvetiopsis trend plot

Pelvetiopsis (Dwarf Rockweed) - motile invertebrate counts

Ecola Pelvetiopsis trend plot

Neorhodomela (Black Pine) - percent cover

Ecola Neorhodomela trend plot

Neorhodomela (Black Pine) - motile invertebrate counts

Ecola Neorhodomela trend plot


Long-Term methods Transects thumbnail

Below are the trends observed for each Transect target species at this site. Long-Term trend graphs also include any species that reached a minimum of 25% cover during any single point in time within a given target species assemblage. Breaks in trend lines represent missed sampling events.

Saccharina (Sea Cabbage)

Ecola hedophyllum trend plot

Phyllospadix (Surfgrass)

Ecola surfgrass trend plot

Species Counts and Sizes

Long-Term methods Counts thumbnail

Species Counts and Sizes (where recorded) for Pisaster are shown below for this site. At some sites, other sea star species and Katharina are counted in addition to Pisaster. The sum of all individuals across all plots is displayed. Note that data gaps are represented by breaks in long-term count trend lines, but are not shown in size plots.

Pisaster (Ochre Star) - counts

Ecola Pisaster trend plot

Pisaster (Ochre Star) - sizes

Ecola Pisaster size plot

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