The crows and gulls weren’t complaining. They didn’t ask what subtidal force mobilized such a large quantity of fresh material. High tide left a drift line littered with macroalgal debris. Drizzle and a chilly south wind made gloomy conditions for foraging and beachcombing.
I didn’t notice the shine until I looked through the photos of my finds from the day. Brown algae have smooth blades that shine even when the sun doesn’t. Below are six species, each with their own shine.
The September 23, 2016 drift line was diverse. If you want to see more browns and other low intertidal and subtidal algae, plants, and animals from this unusual beach cast event, click on Wrack Line 2016.