Saturday, June 25, 2011
with the thrill of the amazing creatures i saw last monday, i didn't get a chance to post some shots of the equally amazing, albeit not quite as rare, creatures i saw on sunday. the tide was quite low and there were as always, some treasures to be found. above is a red rock crab, about as big as my hand. i've seen lots of them while peering down into the water from boats or my paddleboard, but never found one tucked into the sand like this before. i suspect he wasn't doing all that well, as despite being known for their sharp pinch (see those big claws?) he was quite docile and even let me pick him up without protest. i moved him over into the shallows and while briefly distracted by an eagle i left him alone for a few minutes. when i came back he was gone, so i hope he moved into deeper water where he might be happier.
there were lots of hermit crabs exploring the beach. this one was very small.
as is my habit when i walk, i keep my ears tuned for the shrill whistles of bald eagles circling overhead. quite often they alight on big rocks along the shoreline, and i can't help playing a little game with them, seeing how close they might let me get to take photos. even with their backs to me, i know they are always perfectly aware of what i'm doing, probably chuckling in their heads at me. but they do often let me approach quite close, allowing shots like these.
as usual there were also lots of ochre stars exposed with the low tide, some strewn on the sand, others tucked together against rocks. this was a new one for me though - six arms! although most sea stars have five arms, there are occasional species with more (sun stars in particular). and ochre stars are one of many that can regrow arms if they are sheared off. in this case i supposed this guy thought he needed one extra. can you see his little crabby friend?
today i am working on some stitching, but i'm also going to head outside for a bit and do some weeding and other maintenance around the yard. it's an overcast day, but calm with hints of sun every now and then. i'm content to hang out at home today though - A has the next two days off so here's hoping for some adventures! what are you up to this weekend?