那个地区是提议的 丘马什国家海洋保护区. It extends from the Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary in the south, up to the boundary of the Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary in the north. It also reaches 13 miles offshore to the western edge of Santa Lucia Bank, which is a krill hotspot that provides food and habitat for birds and 13 species of dolphins and whales. The area includes sites sacred to the Chumash tribe, and its MPA designation would help integrate indigenous knowledge into conservation efforts.
目前, the Chumash Heritage area is at risk from such harmful activities as oil development, agricultural waste dumping and seismic testing. 如果它被指定为MPA, the Chumash Sanctuary would be permanently protected against these activities.
Within this sanctuary, sea creatures will be able find refuge in 田园诗般的海洋环境. 有一个过渡区, 洋流和冷水汇聚的地方, 丰富的营养, 来自深海的隆起. 有一系列的栖息地类型, from coral reefs and hazy kelp forests to coastal wetlands and dunes. It’s a critical stop along the migratory paths of marine mammals. 它是 25种受威胁或濒临灭绝的物种, including southern sea otters and humpback whales.
In particular, the proposed protected range is critical for sea otters. Thirty-two percent of the southern sea otter population is now located in the proposed Chumash Heritage site. They are a keystone species -- without the otters’ appetite for kelp-eating herbivores like sea urchins, 海藻被耗尽, along with other species that rely on kelp forests for food or habitat. And because otters live near the shore and are susceptible to human-induced stressors, 他们需要一个避难所.
Of course, otters aren’t the only ones at risk. One of the stressors every animal here faces is offshore oil development. 2015年5月, 管道破裂 near what is now the southern boundary of the Chumash Heritage site. Compassionate beachgoers helped with the clean-up effort, which included assisting oil-covered pelicans, 海狮, 海豹和海豚. Some of these animals were eventually rehabilitated and released, but many were not so lucky. The month after the spill, 195 birds, 13 dolphins and 81 海狮 were 在那些被发现死亡的人中. And that doesn’t include the (probably countless) animals who died or suffered in the years following.
These types of disasters will happen again and again if we do not act -- and protecting sites like Chumash is one way to combat this peril.
这就是我们的原因 其中一个 groups and individuals joining the Chumash people to push for the creation of this sanctuary.
Ecosystems unravel when you pull out any one piece. 我们需要照顾我们爱的动物, including those hand-holding otters drifting asleep on the waves. One essential way to do so is by protecting their underwater landscape and everything in it. 作为加州的移植, I’m excited to join the effort to better protect this state’s beautiful coasts. 让我们把这件事做完.