UCBC Mooring Buoys Maintenance
When UCBC Mooring Buoys are installed in a rich environment like Howe Sound, one has to expect life to take hold and to flourish... even where you don't want it to.
Our mission for the day was to provide some much needed servicing to the North Bowyer Island Mooring Buoy. Mussels growing on the buoy and down-lines were almost a foot thick and were threatening to pull the buoy below the surface.
A team of four divers was dispatched. Armed with butter knives, a garden rake and a plaster scraper, the divers set out to liberate the partially submerged buoy from it's burden of bivalves. While the scraping was difficult at first, large clumps of mussels were soon raining down onto the bottom. Starfish eager for an easy meal quickly moved in and began phase 2 of the mussel cleanup.
After 20 minutes of hard labour when the last mussels settled to the sand, the team set off on a tour of the reef.
Sadly, the work was not yet finished.
Sitting there nestled between plumose anemones was a computer!
Recently, there has been a disturbing amount of trash found at our Mooring Buoy sites
Perhaps fishermen are expressing their discontent with the Rockfish Conservation Areas that have been designated around the buoys, perhaps it is simple ignorance of the harm that ocean dumping causes. Either way, the computer had to go! A lift bag was deployed and the computer was swiftly removed and taken to a proper recycling facility.
Unfortunately, many of the people who frequently use the UCBC mooring buoys (pleasure cruisers and fisherman) do not maintain them.
The Underwater Council of British Columbia appreciates your ongoing support through Your Donations for the UCBC Mooring Buoys Program which allows us to continue protecting Howe Sound Reefs from anchor damage.