Snapshot Cal Coast 2018

July 10, 2018 Posted by: Nicole Ornelas
As the Sun rose through the mist at Cabrillo National Monument, wildlife biologists and volunteers joined forces with equipment in hand ready to explore the tidepools. Our team’s goal was to categorize as much biodiversity as possible in the rocky intertidal before the tide came up as a part of Snapshot Cal Coast. 
 
Species of limpets, barnacles and anemones cover the rock while the Cabrillo Team surveys more biodiversity in the rocky intertidal.NPS Photo/Nicole Ornelas, species of limpets, barnacles and anemones cover the rock while the Cabrillo Team surveys more biodiversity in the rocky intertidal. 

Snapshot Cal Coast in an annual statewide effort to document our coastal biodiversity by holding a series of bioblitzes up and down the coast, focusing on intertidal zones in marine protected areas, like here at Cabrillo National Monument. A bioblitz is an intense period of biological surveying in attempt to record all living species in the qualified area. The information gathered is used to establish species ranges, morphology, breeding patterns, and much more monitoring information that is then available for public use. The year’s Snapshot Cal Coast was held during the week of June 13th - 20th, 2018.  
 
Lauren Briggs records a Brown California Sea Hare, Aplysia californica, using iNaturalist. NPS Photo/Nicole Ornelas, Lauren Briggs records a Brown California Sea Hare, Aplysia californica, using iNaturalist. 

Snapshot Cal Coast and other bioblitzes we have done at Cabrillo National Monument in the past are led using the free application iNaturalist that is designed and maintained by the California Academy of Sciences in San Francisco. Feel free to explore more and/or follow this tutorial to get started. 
 
Brittle Star camouflaging amongst many species of algae.NPS Photo/Nicole Ornelas, Brittle Star camouflaging amongst many species of algae. 


June 15, 2018 with a low tide of -1.6 at 5:40 a.m., the Cabrillo team set out bright and early with the motivation of coffee, donuts and a love of science. In a mere few hours, species of Abalone, Brittle Stars, Sea Hares, Nudibranchs, even more algae, and many other fascinating creatures were identified. Snapshot Cal Coast 2018 was able to record over 14,000 observations during this short time frame. Take a look at some of the observations. 

Special thanks to the incredible help of our amazing citizen scientist volunteers. 
We hope to see you at the next bioblitz! 

 
Chief of Natural Resources at Cabrillo National Monument, Keith Lombardo helps identify species with some of the VIP’s.NPS Photo/Nicole Ornelas, Chief of Natural Resources at Cabrillo National Monument, Keith Lombardo helps identify species with some of the VIP’s. 

To become a tidepool volunteer: https://www.nps.gov/cabr/learn/nature/tperp.htm

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Last updated: July 10, 2018

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