Woman holding kelp in order to give it a “haircut”

How Researchers Are Working to Restore Once-Thriving Kelp Forest Along Sonoma Co. Coast

"SONOMA COUNTY, Calif. (KGO) -- A unique ocean-going restoration effort is just getting underway along the Sonoma Coast and its goal is to rescue an underwater forest that's critical to marine life.

"So now we're giving the bull kelp a little haircut so they'll keep tumbling nicely. So they'll grow nice and healthy," says kelp restoration specialist Julieta Gomez.

For Gomez and fellow marine researcher Rachael Karm, the weekly trims are just part of caring for lab-nurtured kelp specimens that will soon be part of the critical mission. To help restore a once-thriving natural population that's been decimated in recent years. The damage began roughly a decade ago, with a shift in the marine environment that killed off local predators like the sunflower sea star. That triggered a population explosion in another, competing, species, ravenous purple sea urchins, which feed on the kelp."

Read the full story at ABC 7 News

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