Fascinating Photos from the Negative Tide in Half Moon Bay

Negative Tide at Half Moon Bay

Back in the beginning of February was one of the lowest daytime tides of the year in Half Moon Bay. Dave, Tim, and I were lucky enough to be able to head out there to wander around on the reef that was left exposed as a result. There were tide pools everywhere! Sometimes they look like they’re empty, but if you crouch down and watch for a bit you start to see little creatures moving about.

Negative Tide at Half Moon Bay

Dave spotted this little critter running across the sand. There were crowds of people in town hoping for a glimpse of sea creatures so as soon as we stopped a bunch of children ran over and wanted to touch the little crab. Their parents, responsible adults that they are, scolded them and told them just to look, but I was giddily trying to get a photo of little fingers poking at the little pincher so my shots would have some perspective. Alas, children are quicker than my shutter so I put my own hand down next to the crab and snapped some pics while crying, “don’t pinch me! don’t pinch me!”.

Negative Tide at Half Moon Bay

Tim got his shoe stuck in the mud while I was safely on the beach so I had to laugh at him and snap some shots. I’m sure he appreciated it.

Negative Tide at Half Moon Bay

Sea anemones, they’re so pretty and squishy looking I just wanna touch ’em and squeeze ’em and toss ’em around like a koosh ball. Ahem, but I won’t do that. I hear it would hurt.

Negative Tide at Half Moon Bay

This sunlit crab appeared to have been eaten by a jellyfish. It’s hard to see from this photo because of the shadows, but there is a big green sack enclosing most of the deceased crab. Can jellyfish live outside of water even for a short while? I’m assuming it was dead too. How poetic.

Negative Tide at Half Moon Bay

In the process of collecting, what I thought was, an empty shell for my niece we discovered this resourceful little dude. I’m not quite sure what it is. The part that’s puckering looks like the sucker of a leach, but shouldn’t that be the part that’s attached to the shell? It also looks to me like the meat that’s inside a clam, but then why isn’t it entirely enclosed in a full shell? Do any of y’all know what this is?

Negative Tide at Half Moon Bay

One of the cutest creatures we saw was this little bitty crab. It’s probably hard to tell from the photo so I’ll let you know that it is about the size of a marble, maybe even a little smaller. I thought it was a hermit crab, but shouldn’t I expect to find those on land rather than on a reef that’s normally under eight feet of water? Hmmm…according to Wikipedia, they are commonly found in tide pools. Isn’t that fascinating?

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