Fins on Fire

Surfperch live on sandy beaches which can be vast, uniformly colored and featureless. It’s a drab place. Sometimes the beaches are broken up by rock features but true sand-dwellers eschew the rocks. In the photo above, my pack is sitting where surfperch will be feeding in a few hours. Surf zone prey frequently camouflage themselves…

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Stranded Sticklebacks

Just after low tide on January 20, I wasn’t expecting the explosive blast of a gasoline-started campfire and I wasn’t expecting to find sticklebacks on the beach sand. The sticklebacks, several of them, were stranded in the drift line from the previous high tide. They were three-spined sticklebacks, one of the common fishes in streams…

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Dabbling with Crustacean Competition

I wonder how three similar and closely related surfperch can live together on homogenous sandy beaches. How do they subdivide theoutershores? One solution might be partitioning their food. To study this, I’m learning to identify what they eat; surf perch and their competitors. Above is one of the first surfperch food items I ever examined.…

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Going, Gone

One morning in June I was wandering around the outer shores during a very low tide, forecast to be -2.3 feet. You can get a sense of this in the photo below. A low tide like this always brings out a few people looking for stuff to harvest on the sandy beaches. They’re usually looking…

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