Coquille Point stairway requires immediate closure
Bandon, Ore. – The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has closed the south staircase at Coquille Point due to public safety concerns, effective immediately. After inspection and consultation with engineers, the Service has concluded the stairs have suffered structural problems as a result of geologic shifting on the point. A path and second set of stairs on the north end of Coquille Point at the end of 8th street will remain open, allowing Coquille Point visitors to access the beach.
“The safety of refuge visitors and employees is our top priority. Consequently, a determination from engineers that the stairs have additional structural concerns requires us to close them to ensure the continued safety of everyone visiting Coquille Point” said Roy Lowe, Project Leader for the Oregon Coast National Wildlife Refuge Complex which manages Coquille Point.
The USFWS is obtaining the services of a structural engineering firm to inspect the staircase within the next week and provide the USFWS with an evaluation on whether a temporary fix is possible in order to retain safe use of the stairs through the end of October. The USFWS will also begin evaluating options for a long term fix through repairs or replacement.
“We are very sorry for the inconvenience this will create for visitors to Coquille Point,” said Roy Lowe. “I can assure visitors that we will seek expertise and funding to either repair or replace the stairs and once again give visitors an easy way to access the beach.”
These stairs have provided visitors with access to Bandon Beach and rocky intertidal areas at the base of Elephant Rock since their construction in 1998. Coquille Point is managed as part of Oregon Islands National Wildlife Refuge. It is a spectacular place to observe seabirds and harbor seals. The point overlooks a series of coastal rocks of every shape and size that provide habitat for Common Murre, Tufted Puffin, Western Gull and Brandt's Cormorant as well as Harbor seal and rocky intertidal invertebrates. A paved trail winds over the headland and features new interpretive panels that share stories about the area's wildlife.
Posted by the Oregon Coast National Wildlife Refuge Complex Staff at 5:38 PM / Category: Oregon Islands NWR
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Construction to reduce mosquito habitat moving forward
JOINT MEDIA RELEASE
July 7, 2014
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service: Megan Nagel, 503-231-6123, firstname.lastname@example.org
Ducks Unlimited: Devin Blankenship, 916-890-3607, email@example.com
Construction to Reduce Mosquito Breeding Habitat Moving Forward at Bandon Marsh
Bandon, Ore. – Ducks Unlimited and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service will begin work to add tidal channels to drain mosquito breeding habitat at Bandon Marsh National Wildlife Refuge on July 15. This work is part of Service’s Integrated Marsh Management Approach to control mosquitoes at the refuge through long-term habitat modification and mosquito control treatments.
Ducks Unlimited awarded a contract to Magnus Pacific to construct 46,000 linear feet of new tidal channels on the Ni-les'tun Unit of the Refuge beginning this month. Small channels up to two feet wide by two feet deep will drain breeding pools that salt marsh mosquitoes require to breed. This will also improve tidal flow within the marsh. Excavation equipment to be used will be specialized to allow operation on soft marsh surfaces without causing significant damage or creating new depressions.
"Improving tidal flow throughout the restored tidal marsh in the Ni-les'tun Unit of the Refuge will greatly reduce mosquito breeding habitat while improving fish and wildlife habitat," said Refuge Project Leader Roy Lowe.
Ducks Unlimited has been working closely with Refuge staff to design and engineer the new channel system, with funds provided by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the Oregon Watershed Enhancement Board. Construction is scheduled to be completed by mid-September. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service will continue to work with Coos County Public Health to monitor and control mosquitoes on Bandon Marsh using the larvicide Bti until permanent habitat modifications are completed and are properly functioning.
More information on the Integrated Marsh Management Approach can be found on the refuge’s mosquito web page www.fws.gov/oregoncoast/bandonmarsh/Mosquito.html.
Posted by the Oregon Coast National Wildlife Refuge Complex Staff at 11:45 AM / Category: Bandon Marsh NWR
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