Jen Frail-Gauthier, our guest leader for this field trip, showed us the secret trail near Peggy’s Cove to get to Cranberry Cove.
Neat-o! We emerged from the forest to set our eyes upon a sandy cove, with easy access to the ocean.
Right away, everybody started to catch Green Crabs. These crabs are very common, and unfortunately very agressive towards our native crabs.
Jen brought some great little collecting containers so that YNC members could collect and take a close look at the creatures we found.
The organisms we found most frequently were Green Crabs, Hermit Crabs, periwinkles, and a variety of seaweeds.
Jen and others got right in the not-so-cold water of Cranberry Cove.
We ventured up and away from the cove, and found more isolated tidal pools in depressions on the rocks.
If you looked closely, the small tidal pools were full of life too, including stickleback, and freshwater invertebrates. Jen lent us little containers to try to catch the tiny, fast creatures. ALL inverts were returned to the water by the end of our awesome trip.
Lesley explained that many invertebrates are attached to the rocks at the bottom of the stream, and she would need to kick the rocks for a few minutes to shake some loose and into her net. (Photo by Adam Cheeseman).
That’s some seriously active sampling! (Photo by Adam Cheeseman).
Lots of oohs and ahhs as we all looked into the sampling net when it came out of the river. (Photo by Adam Cheeseman).
The sampling tube at the end of the net. “Hey – there’s an eel in there!” (Photo by Adam Cheeseman).
Part of our sample from the stream, including an eel. (Photo by Adam Cheeseman).
The net’s sampling tube was emptied into a sieve. It was full of sqiurming life! (Photo by Adam Cheeseman).
Lesley helped us take invertebrates out of sieve and into trays so we could sort them. (Photo by Adam Cheeseman).
We divided the invertebrates up into trays based on how they looked. (Photo by Adam Cheeseman).
A mayfly nymph. Check out those gills along its tail… they look almost like feathers! Those gills, and the 3 tails, helped us identify it.
A dobsonfly nymph. Roar! These guys were big and looked vicious. And in fact they are top predators in benthic food webs.
A dragonfly nymph. These guys are predators too, big time. They have special mouthparts that pierce their prey, then shovel it into their mouths!
Neat-o! These are caddisly nymphs, one in its case (made out of tiny rocks, bit of vegetation, and silk), and one without its home.
Some families started to do their own sampling in the stream, and found cool creatures. (Photo by Adam Cheeseman).
More sampling in the healthy little stream. (Photo by Adam Cheeseman).