Monday, August 4, 2008
Location: Lovells island tide pool
Weather: sunny, mid 70’s to 80 with a light sea breeze
Tools: plastic bags (for samples), and my hands
Observations: We spent about a half hour to any hour observing the sea creatures in the tide pool near low tide that had depths of approximately 1’ to 3’.
I first observed several periwinkles attached to a rock about 12” under water. After looking around I noticed that they were almost everywhere! There did not seem to be a rock that they were not crawling on. The shells ranged in width from a 1/3 of an inch to ¾ of an inch. There were variations in size but as well as color in the sells. The smaller shells were lighter gray near the point and darker near the opening. The mid-sized shells tended to be a consistent medium gray color and the largest shells had a random speckling of grays and dark brown.
I decided to walk out further than the class with Ann to deeper water to see if we could find any other sea creatures to observe. We noticed a form of rock weed growing from some of the larger rocks however they looked a little different from previous observations. This rockweed had a slight variance in the location on the air bladders. With a little research I concluded that they are the same species as it is the only one with the air bladders. We also found two types of seaweed that appear to be sea kelp. They were both pieces that were approximately 2’ long and 6”-8” wide. One was flat and green and the other spiraled and was a brown color.
Orange stuff and sea squirt
Ann had found two specimens of free floating orange stuff. They were encrusted onto what looked like pieces of seaweed. On one piece there was a clear firm creature that squirted when squeezed. It was about a half inch long and approximately and eighth of an inch wide. It did not have a recognizable shape but with close examination we could see what looked like organs inside. This appeared to be a type of sea squirt. Unfortunately I did not have enough time to examine the orange stuff and identify it.
We broke up into our groups and went on a search for land snails. Remembering advice we received from the ranger, we looked up into the sumac trees. We started our search near the top of the island but had no luck finding any specimens. I was reminded by Bruce that the humidity was lower at higher elevations and that we might have better luck moving down the hill. After making a trip down the hill we were able to find the snails. All of the specimens I found were in the Sumac trees either on the bottom side of the leaves or on the branches. They ranged in both size and color. The colors ranged from a yellow background with one or multiple dark brown stripes, chestnut background with dark brown stipes to tan background with dark brown stripes. The body colors also varied from dark gray to light yellow that was almost clear. We spent a while examining the shells of snails we found and tried to determine if they were in fact the same species or if they were different. I have not yet been able to answer the question myself.