Thursday, December 31, 2015

Happy New Year from NECWA!

Sammy Beynor finding a cold-stunned sea turtle at
Scorton Creek, Sandwich, MA on December 30, 2015.

Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Boston Globe Article about our GoFundMe Campaign to bring Salt to kids all over New England.

The Boston Globe recently posted in their online section a great article about NECWA's GoFundMe campaign to purchase a commercially-made inflatable model of Salt, the most famous humpback whales.

To read the entire article, click HERE.

Help NECWA reach their goal by contributing to this exciting and special fundraising campaign. Thank you for your kindness and generosity!

Best, Krill
President and Marine Biologist

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Happy Holidays from all of us at NECWA

We wish you and your loved ones a very happy and safe holiday season. 

Thank you for your continued support over the years. 

May 2016 bring you peace, happiness, and joy!  

11th Ocean Sunfish carcass of the 2015 season.

Our 11th ocean sunfish carcass of the 2015 season stranded yesterday on First Encounter Beach in Eastham, MA. Thanks to Allie, her dad Ken, her mom and cute dog, who reported this carcass to NECWA yesterday morning.

Meg, Allie (her dog), and Kayla.

Allie was on break from college and was spending time on the Cape with her family. Little did she know that Krill would put her to work and give her a knife to help with the necropsy. There is no better way to get experience than by doing and how often do you get a chance to do something like this! 

Aluminum tripod donated by Dale and Annette Eldridge.
We were able to try out our new aluminum tripod that was donated to NECWA by Dale and Annette Eldridge. We want to thank them very much for this wonderful donation for it will allow NECWA to safely weigh large carcasses. We also want to thank Krill's neighbor Dick who made the wooden pads and the flexible rod. Without these tools, we couldn't do the job correctly and safely.

Kayla attaching the chain fall. 
Tripod ready for action. 
Krill and Kayla putting the straps under the carcass. 
Lifting the carcass. 
Final product! Getting an accurate weight for the carcass. 

An average sized fish - 462 pounds. 
All of the carcasses that NECWA has examined are juvenile fish. Hard to image a juvenile fish weighing 462 pounds. But this wasn't the biggest fish we have seen to date, just one of average size.

Meg collecting data. 

Kayla measuring the dorsal fin. 
Kayla and Krill examining the pharyngeal gill slits. 
Everyone worked hard together as a team and learned a lot. All the data and tissues collected will be shared with students and professors at Bridgewater State University and with researchers in New England as well as world-wide. By working together with others who are also fascinated with this species, we hope to learn more about this amazing animal that comes to our New England waters each summer to feed on jellyfish. Got to love 'em!

Allie examining the digestive tract. 

Friday, December 18, 2015

Support NECWA through AmazonSmile

Support NECWA this holiday season by choosing the New England Coastal Wildlife Alliance as the organization you support on your AmazonSmile account.

Amazon will donate 0.5% of the price of eligible AmazonSmile purchases to NECWA. This isn't a lot, but it does add up and we greatly appreciate any level of support.

Thank you for your support. 

Happy Holidays to one and all!

Click below for NECWA's AmazonSmile account.

Sunday, December 6, 2015

Christmas Bazaar at St. Martha's and Mary's in Lakeville

On Saturday, December 6th, NECWA was part of the annual Christmas Bizaar at St. Martha's and Mary's in Lakeville. We had a great time chatting-up the work we do with coastal marine wildlife and NECWA offered a free activity for any of the kids who were interested.

Our Christmas holiday activity was "make your own whale ornament" where kids could choose a whale photo taken offshore and use it to make an ornament that they could hang on their tree. We love the creativity of these young folk.

A big "thank you" to our staff members Krill, Mary, and our intern Alex, for doing such a great job. We hope to return to this event next season for we all enjoyed the festivities. We met many old friends at the bazaar as well as many

Alex helping out at our whale ornament activity. 
Happy holidays to one and all.

Marine wildlife displays at the Christmas bazaar.

Saturday, November 28, 2015

This Tuesday is Giving Tuesday, a worldwide effort to help non-profits during this holiday season. 

Please consider a gift to NECWA on this very special day. We are an all-volunteer nonprofit so all donations go directly to the marine wildlife that we love and cherish. 

Thank you and Happy Holidays!

Thursday, November 26, 2015

Please watch and support if you can.

Please watch this amazing video by clicking on the link below.

This is why the staff and interns of NECWA do what we do on behalf of all life on Earth.

Happy Thanksgiving from NECWA

We wish you and your loved ones a wonderful holiday season. 
From all of us at NECWA.

Sunday, November 1, 2015

New NEBShark magnet truck signs.

New magnetic sign for NEBShark stranding work.
Thanks to Jean and Mark from Northeast Printing & Graphics for the new magnetic truck signs that help identify Krill's truck when NECWA staff are on the beach rescuing or necropsying ocean sunfish this fall. These signs help advertise the fact that the NEBShark stranding response team is working on the beach.

Magnetic signs on Krill's truck.
We want to thank Northeast Printing & Graphics for doing such a great job making these signs for NEBShark. This company is a big supporter of NECWA's and we want to thank them for all their donations to our organization over the years. We ask our NECWA and NEBShark members to show their support by choosing this company for all their printing and shipping needs. Check out their website at

Krill's truck parked near Loagy Bay at Lieutenant's Island in Wellfleet, MA.

Monday, October 26, 2015

2015 Wellfleet Oyster Festival a huge success!

NECWS's tent at the WOF

NECWA was once again invited to the Wellfleet Oyster Festival (WOF) this fall. Once again, this event was fun and very productive for us. Lots of people stopped by our tent to pick-up information about the New England Basking Shark and Ocean Sunfish sighting network. By getting the word out, we hope to be able to learn more about these two large and not well understood fish that feed in our cold productive waters.

Free Educational Material for NEBSHark.

Marianne manning the booth!

Lots of people stopped by our booth to chat and to purchase some merchandise to support our efforts. NECWA is an all-volunteer group so all profits go back to the animals through the purchase of supplies and equipment.

Although we don't have kids sweatshirts, these lovely ladies decided to purchase a sweatshirt regardless. There is always time to grow into the sweatshirts!

One of the activities that we offer is NECWA's "Make your own fossil shark tooth necklace." This is a great activity for kids have to pick out their beads, the color of their necklace leather, and their fossil shark tooth. The creativity that goes on to make their individual necklace is wonderful to see. Even our interns love to make their own necklaces.

Alyssa putting together her shark tooth necklace. 

Saturday night was beautiful in Provincetown as NECWA staff wound down from a long day at the festival. With a good nights sleep, we were back in our tent chatting with folks all day Sunday. 

Provincetown at night!

Sunday, October 4, 2015

The 2015 Ocean Sunfish Stranding Season has begun!

Alex and Carly setting up NECWA's portable weighing tripod. 
As of today, NECWA has responded to 3 ocean sunfish standings on the shores of New England. The first fish stranded dead off Quincy. The second fish stranded dead on the rocks that support the Wellfleet Pier. The third fish stranded live in Duck Creek marsh in Wellfleet, but was not able to be saved due to the very dangerous location where it stranded.
Dead ocean sunfish in the marsh mud.
Close-up view of the dead ocean sunfish. 
NECWA responds to as many ocean sunfish as is possible and will rescue any live animals that are in need of assistance. If a carcass washes up on a local beach, then we conduct a necropsy (animal autopsy) to collect tissues and samples for research and education.

Alex paying out the line as Krill tries to reach the carcass. 
Here are some photos from our last necropsy which was conducted on October 3, 2015 in Duck Creek marsh. Krill had to kayak out to the fish which was situated in the middle of the mud flats in the marsh. These flats are very dangerous for the mud can be almost like quicksand.

Krill using a kayak to get close to the carcass deep in the marsh.
By using a kayak, Krill was able to safely reach the carcass as the tide came in. Once close to the carcass, Krill tried to pierce the carcass with a large and sharp hook. Unfortunately, the hook bounced right off as it could not penetrate the thick reticulated collagen right under the thin skin.

As the tide continued to rise, Krill was able to float the ocean sunfish to the shoreline as NECWA staff member Carly and NECWA intern Alex pulled on their end of the line.
Hook sunk into the eye of the ocean sunfish. 
Once the carcass was towed into shallow water along the shoreline, Krill, Carly, and Alex worked very quickly to weigh, measure, and necropsy the fish. As the tide continued to rise, the team had to pull the fish closer to the shoreline every 10 minutes in order to be able to accurately measure the carcass.

Krill measuring the pectoral fin. 
Alex and Krill moving the carcass. 
Alex and Krill putting straps under the carcass. 
Alex and Krill pulling the carcass up onto the beach as the tide came in.
This was a young male ocean sunfish and using NECWA's portable tripod, we determined that it weighed over 450 pounds. This fish was very healthy, but it did have cuts out of both its dorsal and anal fins. Although the cuts were quite extensive, especially those on the dorsal fin, neither appeared to be life threatening.

Very sad to think that this fish died simply because it was at the wrong place at the wrong time. Samples taken back to BSU will be used for research, conservation, and education. NECWA shares samples with researchers not only in New England, but also in Europe.

Measuring the width of the dorsal fin. 

Missing section on the right side of the anal fin. 
 Krill would like to thank both Carly and Alex for doing such an amazing job. This was one of the toughest carcass retrievals and necropsies that the team has attempted. Not only was it messy working on site in the marsh, but it was also very strenuous as you had to keep pulling the carcass up onto the shoreline as the tide continued to come in. Both young professionals worked hard and went over and above what most volunteers do on behalf of the animals.

Alex measuring the cut int the anal fin. 
Carly collecting data. 

 We hope that you will support our efforts to save or examine ocean sunfish that strand on our local New England beaches. NECWA needs your support and all financial contributions will be used to purchase the necessary supplies and equipment. To donate today, go to our website at and click on the Just Give button. Thank you.