What’s In the Tidepools? – November 2021
It’s tidepool season again! As we move into lower and lower tides, we will resume monthly posts with all the fun things our wonderful TPERPers spot out there.
An assortment of pinnipeds can occasionally be seen from the cliffs above the tidepools. Normally they are sunbathing or searching for food. Remember that they are wild animals and all visitors should keep distance from them. Luckily these are in the closed area of the park north of the Spur Trail.
Brittle stars are the most mobile echinoderms. Flexible arms are used for crawling or clinging. This star was observed in Zone 2 and was only the size of a quarter.
The lateral arm spines provide traction. their habit of breaking off arms as a means of defense. New arms are easily regenerated.
A myriad of brown pelicans was spotted at low tide. Pelicans are social and gregarious animals, and were removed from the Endangered Species List in 2009.
Part of a California Spiny Lobster was found inside an anemone.
Our Marine Biologist, Lauren Pandori, says Anemones are pretty opportunistic in what they chose to “eat” and often catch things that aren’t digestible. They will often grab things they can’t eat, and will “spit them out” (this is in quotes because they have a single digestive opening) shortly after grabbing them. For example, I have seen an anemone engulf a snail, and the snail has come out ~ 30 mins later unscathed.
Yay! A marriage proposal!! There have been many proposals at the park.
Meet Charlotte. A young girl found this rock, named it Charlotte, washed it, cared for it and protected it while she visited the tidepools. She knew she couldn’t take it home and wanted to leave it for others to enjoy, so she found Pauline and handed it to her.
Mysids are little, shrimp-like, omnivorous crustaceans that feed on algae, detritus and zooplankton. Mysids are cultured in laboratories for experimental purposes and are used as a food source for other cultured marine organisms. They are sensitive to water pollution, so are sometimes used as bioindicators to monitor water quality used to test for pesticides and other toxic substances.
More gorgeous sunsets!