On the Water with the Pinto Abalone Team

Saving endangered Pinto abalone is hard in part because locating their habitat is time-consuming and, as a result, expensive. The process involves dive crews on the water in search of suitable locations, but there are only so many dives a team can do in a day. A recent SeaDoc-funded project is looking for something more efficient.

Photojournalist Gemina Garland-Lewis has been on board with James Dimond, education specialist with the Marine and Coastal Sciences program of Western Washington University, and his team this summer as they’ve explored a new method that involves bottling up sea water and testing it for the presence of abalone DNA to determine habitat. Nothing like a simple innovation!