Orange and Purple Ochre Sea Stars

With the arrival of the full moon, it produced a nice low tide of a negative 3/4 of a foot yesterday morning for my walk with a chance to check out the tide pools and an opportunity to survey our local Ochre Sea Stars. As one may be aware, a great majority of the sea stars along the Pacific Coast, from Alaska to Mexico have succumbed to the Sea Star Wasting Syndrome (SSWS). The disease is called a wasting syndrome because that is exactly what happens to  the sea stars, they wast away. Deteriorating tissue eventually leads to the loss of limbs, deflation of the body and eventually, death. The disease started in 2013 and spread in an erratic fashion; from Vancouver BC to Monterey Bay, to Puget Sound and Southern California. In 2014 it made it to Mexico and finally to Oregon. An excellent discussion of this disease along with other information can be found at this University of California at Santa Cruz web site. While the numbers I saw  were defiantly lower, I didn’t see any sea stars that exhibited signs of the wasting disease.

Of course there were the nice Giant Green Sea Anemones in every pool.

Giant Green Sea Anemone

The nice thing about walking the beach is that it is constantly changing from one day to the next and one season to the other. The forces of the wind waves, rain and sun continue to transform the sand, rocks and vegetation.  Unfortunately, we are now in our summer weather pattern of hot air in the interior of Oregon which produces a song onshore flow of cool marine air. This brings about foggy or cloudy mornings and windy afternoons. The rest of the images from this morning were full of gray cloud weather and here is a sample of what an afternoon looks like.

Sony A7 MII, FE 24-240 at 78mm, 1/800 f/5.6 ISO 100





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