Sunday, July 15, 2012

Seaweeds, Tunicates, and Sea Squirts

Hi all!  My group found many specimens for today, but we couldn't identify them all!  Here's our best shot at twelve of the specimens.

 Found in both locations we stuck our hands into the water, these creatures are mussels.
 On top of one of the mussels, this mucous-y yellow residue is harder than it looks.  We believe it's a boring sponge.
 After many detailed readings, this brownish-when-wet, pokey yet rubbery specimen was determined to be graceful red weed.
 This creature was ovalish and originally looked to be covered in snot.  We peeled back this layer to reveal a darker brown, almost black covering.  We finally cut it in half and saw it's inner orange tubular shape.  We believe it to be an orange footed cucumber.
 This orange slimy thing is an orange tunicate. 
 This was snapped at the aquarium in the seals' habitat.  The pointy ball of spikes near the ground is a purple sea urchin.
 The creatures that squirted out the water are known as sea squirts.
 The skeleton shrimp were crawling all over this Bowerbank's Halichondria and mussel.
 This grass-like, stringy green mess was determined to be soft sour weed.
In the upper left, the small, crinkly, almost moss-like specimen is spongomorpha and the sea lettuce is the green lettuce-like specimen in the middle of the picture.

In the picture of the dock from last year, there appears to be many more species than this year.  The overall width of specimens on the dock is much wider, and there are many more colors of species than I saw today. My first guess as to why this may be different is that Emily (the person who let us onto the docks at Rowe's Wharf) mentioned that parts of the dock had been recently scraped.  Perhaps last year they did not scrape the sections as often, or at all.


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