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CDFW - Tidepool Collection Regulations

"Regulations that either prohibit or limit the collection of species like turban snails, hermit crabs and mussels are meant to protect our tidepools, which are full of fascinating life that’s important to the marine ecosystem,” said Dr. Craig Shuman, CDFW Marine Region Manager.

Individuals should not remove any animals from tidepools that they don’t plan on keeping and should also be aware that even walking over some sensitive areas can unintentionally harm tidepool plants and animals.

“It is important to watch where you walk, not only to avoid unintentionally harming the myriad of sea life that call California’s tidepools home, but to avoid an accidental fall,” Shuman said.

Tidepool animals have special regulations that limit the species and numbers that can be taken (California Code of Regulations Title 14, section 29.05). Most species found in tidepools can only be collected by hand. The use of pry bars, knives or other devices to remove them from the rocks is not allowed. There are also regulations that cover fish found in tidepools, which can only be taken by hook and line or hand. No nets or other devices can be used. In addition, the California Department of Public Health’s annual mussel quarantine is in effect until at least Nov. 1, because eating mussels at this time of year may be hazardous to your health. Mussels can be collected for bait but may not be taken for human consumption during this period.

“People may not realize that anyone age 16 or older must have a valid sport fishing license to collect tidepool animals, and that there are limits to how many can be taken,” said Assistant Chief Mike Stefanak of the CDFW Marine Law Enforcement Division. “In Southern California, an Ocean Enhancement Validation is also required for tidepool collection.”

Most marine protected areas (MPAs) do not allow collection of tidepool animals. MPA maps and regulations are available on CDFW’s MPA webpage, and on the mobile-friendly Ocean Sport Fishing interactive web map. Local authorities may also close off other areas to tidepool collecting.

Any wildlife crimes witnessed can be easily reported to CDFW’s “CalTIP” hotline, by calling 1-888-334-2258, or by texting “CALTIP”, followed by a space and the message, to 847-411 (tip411).


Billboards Around the Harbor

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The Crescent City Harbor District leases ground space to Outfront Media for the billboards the company has placed along U.S. Hwy 101. The Harbor District only leases the ground and has no input on what advertising messages are placed on the billboards. Outfront Media can be reached at 1-800-966-9569.

8 Ways to Love Boating While Safely Waiting Out the Coronavirus

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 (courtesy of the Boat Owners Association of The United States, BoatUS

  1. Online Training: Become a smarter sailor while saving big bucks by taking Offshore Sailing School’s Learn to Sail or the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary’s Modern Marine Navigation courses free any time through May 15. Use the coupon code “learnfree” at at registration.
  2. Checklists: Just ask the person at the boat ramp who forgot to install the hull drain plug - checklists will save a headache or two. What kind of printed, laminated checklist would be helpful to have aboard? Ideas include: pre-launch checklisttrailering checklist (did you remember to cross the safety chains?), and safety checklist.
  3. Ditch Kit Prep: Whether you're an inshore day cruiser, offshore angler, or cruising sailor, you always need to be prepared to abandon ship. Here’s what to pack in a ditch kit.
  4. Docking Skills: Docking can be a spectator sport. The BoatUS How to Dock a Boat YouTube playlist includes a range of docking scenarios that show you how, from outboard to inboard powered boats. It also includes ‘How to Back a Single Engine Inboard Boat Into a Slip’ – the single most impressive recreational boat docking maneuver of them all.
  5. Preventive Maintenance: If the boat and trailer are safely in the garage or driveway, now may be the time to look at all the things you never have enough time to, such as replacing outdrive anodes, changing trailer bearings or restoring the shine to gelcoat. It’s all in one place at BoatUS Trailer Boat YouTube playlist, including small boat handling tips such as ‘How to Use Trim Tabs,’ the most-watched BoatUS video ever.
  6. Knot Skills: Learn how to tie up your family, pets or anything else around the house with help from the BoatUS Essential Boating Knots YouTube playlist. Practicing at home now will make these knots easier to remember aboard the boat when the pandemic is over.
  7. Shopping: Consider supporting the waterfront businesses you enjoy – restaurants, marine supply shops etc.
  8. Caring for Waterways: Help protect the water you love and take the free, online BoatUS Foundation Clean Boating course, which offers simple steps you can take to reduce the impact boating activities on our waterways.

Chart Room Still Open!

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Have you tried the new walk-up order window at the Chart Room yet? The iconic harbor restaurant initiated take out service this week in an effort to prevent the spread of the Coronavirus for their patrons. They’ve also added outdoor seating, with great views of South Beach, where you can eat and still maintain your six foot distance from other diners. They’re serving a full menu so you can order anything from a snack to a full dinner to go. And, like always, the smiling staff team is ready to serve you and there will probably be a few Sea Lions on hand to entertain you while you wait for your meal!

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Coronavirus & Adjusted Harbor Operations

-- UPDATE: 27 March, 2020 - Public Health Order -- 

By order of the Del Norte Public Health Officer, all short term rentals, defined as sleeping accommodations for a duration of less than 30 days per guest, are prohibited in Del Norte County until the declared COVID-19 emergency ends. This will impact guests intending to stay at our two RV Parks (Redwood Harbor Village and Bayside RV Park). The complete text of the order is available here:


-- UPDATE: 20 March, 2020 - Letter from CEO/Harbor Master Charlie Helms --

In order to comply with Governor Newsom's Executive Order N-33-20 that directs Californians, "to stay at home or at their place of residence" we will no longer offer in-person public hours at the Harbor Office.

We are still keeping the office staffed during regular hours which are 8 a.m. until 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. However, we will not be opening the office for in-person transactions. Credit card transactions will be processed over the phone, and if you need to pay on an account by check, please use the mail slot located in the front door of the Harbor Office at 101 Citizens Dock Road. This social distancing should help minimize health risks for our clients and our staff.

We will be keeping the public and RV Park restrooms open and clean to the best of our ability and will continue to offer support services to our commercial fishing fleet tenants. The District Security staff will continue to provide after-hours safety and security patrols.

Our Harbor District restaurants are open and are offering take-out service and are also providing outdoor seating options in their efforts to follow guidelines on proper social distancing. The health and safety of our tenants, staff team members, guests and friends has always been our highest priority and we are striving to do all that is within our power to keep you safe while still meeting your service needs.

Our Del Norte County Department of Health and Human Services and the Del Norte County Office of Emergency Services,, are both working to keep all of us informed about this unprecedented assault on public health. Let's all work together as best as we can to contain this threat to our health and economy. Thank you for your patience and understanding.


Sea Lions Take Note of New Harbor Signage

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Our Sea Lions have shown their approval of our new Harbor Wildlife sign!

Although it can be tempting to try to get close to our marine neighbors, it’s always best to view them from a safe and respectful distance for their safety — and yours.

Keep in mind that seals and sea lions often spend their time out of the water to rest, molt, or nurse their pups. Close encounters with people can be harmful and continued disturbances may cause stress, including causing mothers to abandon their pups. 


Please do not attempt to swim with, pet, touch, or elicit a reaction from the animals. You’re too close if an animal starts to stare, fidget, or flee into the water. Even if you don't see these reactions, the National Marine Fisheries Service recommends that you keep yourself and your pets at least 50 yards away (1/2 a football field). Keep your dog on a leash around seals or sea lions to prevent bites to the dog and the seals or sea lions.

Please never attempt to feed a seal or sea lion — it’s harmful and illegal under federal law. Why? Feeding alters the behavior of wild marine mammals, and may condition them to approach people and vessels for food, instead of foraging for their normal prey. Seals and sea lions can become sick if they eat food that is not part of their normal diet. They may also begin taking bait and catch from fishing gear, risking injury or death by entanglement in or ingestion of the gear. 
With these guidelines in mind, we encourage you to come and view these magnificent animals in person (safely and respectfully). See you soon!