BEACH Program

Help Your Beach

Be a good beach steward.

Here are some tips to help keep your beach clean.

Pick up after your pet.

Pick it up, bag it, and throw it in the trash. Contact with pet waste can make people sick and possibly cause disease. Also, nutrients from dog poop can feed the growth of aquatic plants and algae. As these decay, they use up oxygen in the water that fish and other aquatic life need.

Learn more: Dog Poop | Pet Waste: What's the problem? (pdf) brochure from the Pacific Shellfish Institute

Don’t feed wildlife.

Birds and other animals will congregate in the feeding area, increasing wildlife waste on the beach.

Pick up your trash.

Waste from dirty diapers can make people sick. Plastic bags pollute water and can entangle or kill animals. Cigarette butts take up to 25 years to break down and are poisonous to animals that try to eat them.

Swim only when well.

Swimmers should stay out of the water when they are ill, especially with diarrhea.

Help children to keep water clean.

Children should take frequent bathroom breaks. Diapers should be changed frequently, and a swim diaper should be worn while playing in or near the water. Dispose of diapers in the trash.

Boaters, don't discharge.

Recreational boaters, discharge bilge water and sewage-holding tanks only in approved disposal facilities. See Washington State Pumpout Locations (at State Parks) for a map of where to pump. If you discharge into the water or near the beach, you can contribute to fecal bacteria in the water. Avoid fuel spills.

Learn more here: Clean, Green Boating  | Fueling Recreational Boats

Anglers, put fish guts and heads in the trash.

When fishing, use appropriate bathroom facilities; human waste can cause disease. Dispose of fish entrails in the trash. Fish entrails can attract nuisance wildlife and increase wildlife waste on the beach.

See Washington Waters, Ours to Protect to get more tips on what you can do to keep your waterways clean.