Sunday, July 15, 2012

On The Docks

It was another hot day in Boston as we set out to explore what lives beneath the docks people walk on each day.  There were many different species that call the docks home, some were easy to identify while others caused me to look at the organism, then look at my book, then back again, repeating this process over and over.  You could spend a great deal of time looking at all the different forms of life that reside on the floating docks, and just in the short few hours we spent searching, ten species tallied up rather quickly.  Here is what I was able to come up with...

(My handy cap comes in technology so if you're looking for a picture blog you've come to the wrong place.)

1. Typical Rock Weed- Attached to the rocks and has pods at the end of each strand that when popped release a clear gel.

2. Stripped Bass- Unfortunately this fish was not caught, however I would have loved to stay and haul that sucker in.

3. Sea Urchin- Had I been in charge of naming this I don't think Urchin would have been the name to choose.  It is a round creature that contains many thorn looking objects coming out.

4. Irish Moss- A redish looking seaweed that has branch looking shapes on it.  When you Google Irish Moss it seems more of a healthy plant than anything else.

5. Orange Seathe Turnicate- My first guess was fish eggs, second guess was a sponge and I never actually guessed it to be a Seathe Turnicate.

6. Blue Muscle- Likely the most abundant thing I saw today.  They were attached to everything we observed, some were no longer in their shells while others were.

7. Zostera Marina Linnaeus- A grassy looking seaweed that is flat and long.  It has the same design as a very long blade of grass.

8. Skeleton Shrimp- Whenever you pulled off a large chunk of seaweed, muscles and whatever else was attached, skeleton shrimp were small praying mantis looking creatures that lived in the mud.  Funny looking critters if you watch them move around.

9. Barnacle- Which are the tiny white objects that are attached to every pillar or rock in the water.  They are sharp on the top, and don't even bother trying to take one off because they are stuck on tighter than anything.

10. Sea Lettuce- Green, salad looking plant that just drifts with the tide.

Those are my ten species that I identified.  I'm looking forward to tomorrow and spending the day on the island!


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