Endangered Species

Critically endangered sea star not recovering in the wild, scientists point to the need for restoration efforts

New research documenting the population crash of the iconic sunflower sea star (Pycnopodia helianthoides), and complete absence of population recovery since the 2013 outbreak of the marine wildlife epidemic sea star wasting disease, was published today in the prestigious journal Proceedings of the Royal Society B. The study calls for new strategies for protecting species impacted by increasingly frequent marine epidemics associated with changing ocean conditions.

Springtime White Abalone Spawning at Bodega Marine Lab

A Brief History of White Abalone

Once abundant, white abalone were critically overfished in the 1970s. With the remaining wild white abalone so far apart from one another that they were unable to reproduce successfully, experts determined that captive breeding and outplanting were the best ways to save the species. After early breeding efforts were hampered by disease, the program headquarters moved to UC Davis Bodega Marine Laboratory in 2011.

Endangered White Abalone Program Yields Biggest Spawning Success Yet

Millions of Eggs Bring Program 1 Step Closer to Saving Species

The Bodega Marine Laboratory’s white abalone program has millions of new additions following its most successful spawning ever at the University of California, Davis, facility. Three out of nine recently collected wild white abalone spawned last week, as did seven of 12 captive-bred white abalone. One wild female was particularly generous, producing 20.5 million eggs herself.