Monday, February 04, 2008

North Eastern Pacific Seashore Animals


Northern Red Anemone, Tealia crassicornis
5" high, 3" wide, approximately 100 thick, blunt tentacles, frequently ringed with white, red, or dark pigment. Listed as T. felina in some references, this species size is a function of food availability rather than age.

Green Green Sea Anemone, Anthopleura xanthogrammica
Column greenish brown; tentacles green, blue, or white; oral disk green, gray, or blue. Numerous short thick tentacles, in 6 or more rings.

Plumose Anemone, Metridium serile
This anemone is common on subtidal bottoms on the Atlantic and Pacific coasts of the United States. Note the feathery and delicate tentacles.It feeds upon smaller zooplankton. Individuals often exceed 15 cm in length and may be over a meter in length. Under strong current conditions the feathery tentacles are retracted.

Aggregating Anemone, Anthopleura elegantissima


gooseneck barnacles
Gooseneck Barnacles, Pollicipes polymerus
This barnacle may look like a mollusk but it is in fact a crustacean related to shrimps, lobsters and crabs. Barnacles attach themselves to rocks by their heads and feed by means of their feathery legs. Their resilient stalks are tough enough to withstand the forces of the sea tossing them in the surf. Goose barnacles are edible and have been exported to Spain as a delicacy.

Yellow Shore Crab, Hemigrapsus oregonesis


California Mussels
California Mussels, Mytilus californianus
Thin blue-black covering (periostracum) over shells, often with streak of brown, and a series of rounded ridges extend the length of each shell.

Mossy Chiton
Mossy Chiton, Mopalia muscosa
Girdle covered with stiff hairs. It does not hide under rocks like most chitons so it is readily visible in diredt light. It stays in one place until dark then begins feeding on algae. Unlike the soft girdle hairs of the Hairy Chiton the Mossy Chiton has stiff hairs. Individuals have a home range of 50 cm.


Male Water Jellyfish, Aequored aequored (Aequored victoria)
15 cm diameter, luminescent at night, found worldwide, males are blue in colour.


Female Hooded Merganser, Lophodytes cucullatus
The female Hooded Merganser is brown overall with a bushy brown crest, gray upper breast and flanks and white markings on the wings. The upper bill is dark brown and the lower bill is dark yellow.

Male Hooded merganser, Lophodytes cucullatus
Small merganser with black upperparts and white underparts with two black bars on side of breast; red-brown flanks. Crest shows large white patch when raised, white stripe extending backwards from the eye when lowered, and dark bill. Dark wings have white shoulder patches visible in flight.

Harlequin Duck, Histrionicus histrionicus
Leaves the salt water in spring to breed in fast-flowing rivers and streams. An endangered species on the Atlantic coast, dives to the bottom of streams, where it walks along searching for food. Known as 'sea mice' and 'squeakers' because of their mouse-like call, they congregate at traditional winter sites to feed in the swirling waters of shallow and rocky coastal areas.

Mallard (Anas platyrhynchos)
Male Mallard, Anas platyrhynchos
Medium-sized dabbling duck with gray body and chestnut-brown breast. The head is green and neck ring is white. Bill is yellow-green. Wing speculum is white-bordered metallic purple-blue. The tail is dark with distinct white edges and two curled black feathers. Legs and feet are orange.
Mallard (Anas platyrhynchos)
Female Mallard, Anas platyrhynchos

Bald Eagle, Haliaeetus leucocephalus
Large, hawk-like bird, dark brown body and white head, tail. Heavy bill, legs, feet, eyes are yellow. Hunts for fish, which it sometimes steals from ospreys. Eats carrion and crippled or injured squirrels, rabbits, muskrats and waterfowl. Flap-and-glide flight, also soars on thermals.

Sea gull with kelp crab

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