Tuesday 9 June 2015

All ashore – 1st Sunday rAmble (7th June) of the summer

There were lots of amazing creatures to be seen along the shore on yesterday’s walk from Bowmore towards Gartbreck. Aided by a perfectly timed low tide, blue sky and our walk-leader Fiona’s wealth of knowledge, we uncovered shore crabs, tortoiseshell limpets, a chiton, a small flatfish, sandhoppers scooting through the water, a common shrimp, and lots of golden carpet shells to name but a few. 

There was even a Squat Lobster that must have been the victim of stormy weather and sadly it was full of roe, as these photos show. 

Possibly the most beautiful slug I’ve ever seen was the sea-slug we found, Facelina bostoniensis. An amazing sight as its sluggy fronds waved gently in the water.

And scattered all over the shore were glistening jelly-like blobs of algae, Leathesia difformis, known variously as sea balls, or sea cauliflower.

We also found a piece of kelp with a sea-mat on it that made it look a bit like a snake skin! Apparently it’s a bryozoan called Membranipora membranacea…but I think I’ll just call it Bryan.
Or maybe this one should be called Bryan!
Breadcrumb sponge with a tuft of red seaweed

A fantastic way to spend a few hours – looking forward to the next walk!

Sunday 14th June - 2pm: Sanaigmore -Dunes and Coastal Treasures.

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