A large orange goldfish under a rock

What’s In the Tidepools? – February 2022

Low shrubs of various colors in the sunlight.

What’s In the Tidepools? – February 2022

(NPS Photo/M. Rose)

Our dedicated volunteers at Cabrillo National Monument take photos of the exciting flora and fauna down in the tidepools! We want to try and capture the wonderful photos that volunteers are taking in the tidepool area. This blog post is published on a monthly basis, but we need your help. We encourage you to keep contributing by submitting your memorable photos and/or short videos to cnmvipvoice@gmail.com. These can be of tidepool critters, fauna, bluff collapses, sunsets or anything you consider special. Make sure you include who took the photo and the location, if possible. Will you help?

You can find videos on the Tidepool Videos page.

Here are some highlights from this month!

Visitors and TPERPers alike have spotted many Globose Kelp Crabs exposed by some of the lower recent tides. They are generally identified by their large size, up to a foot in total diameter.

We believe this is a McDonald’s Dorid. The row of orange dots down the center of the back is one of its distingushing characteristics. Its range is mostly in Southern California.

A white cylindrical slug with orange spikes
NPS Photo/B. Nightingale

A Blue & Gold Nudibranch, also known as a California Blue Dorid (Felimare californiensis), has bright colors warning other predators to stay away. Its main diet consists of sponges and is infrequently sighted in the tidepools.

A blue flat cylinder with yellow dots
NPS Photo/T. Woods

The Spanish Shawl is a very colorful nudibranch known for its characteristic swimming motion in which it flexes in alternating U shapes.

NPS Video/N. Cheng

The white corn like kernels are whelk eggs. In addition to the whelk eggs, yellow sponges can also be seen.

A yellow sponge stuck on the bottom of a rock. White corn kernels are above the sponge.
NPS Photo/M. Rose

The Conspicuous Chiton rests during the day and comes out at night to find algae on the rocks. The small mouth conceals a serrated radula, which are similar to teeth. The radula contains magnetite which helps it to graze easily.

A flat oval made up of 8 vertical segments. Brown short hair borders the oval.
NPS Photo/D. Raetzman

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