Aerial view of Garrison Bay (© Washington Dept. of Ecology)
Garrison Bay, located on the west side of San Juan Island, was named after the military camp established by the British following the Pig War eruption in 1860. The bay is characterized by muddy substrate, which is overlain by a thick diatomaceous layer close to the shoreline. Coarse shell material is abundant within the mud, along with numerous boulder-size rocks. Both the shells and rocks provide microhabitats for many organisms found in the bay, including polychaetes, crabs, nudibranchs, brittlestars, bryozoans, limpets, anemones, chitons, sponges, and gastropod egg masses.
Team Mud (Paul Harnik, Katherine Nicholson, Krisha Tracy, and Susan Wang) spent four low tides characterizing unique aspects of Garrison Bay's physical biology and faunal diversity. Our objectives at Garrison Bay were to:
Team Mud gives special thanks to the Howe family for allowing us generous access to the intertidal through their property.
- Using an onshore - offshore transect , characterize the environmental gradient through the intertidal by
- Characterize microhabitats and the marine invertebrate fauna of Garrison Bay by
- observing surficial frequency of target fauna (Tresus capax, Metridium sea anemones Melanochlamys and Haminoea bubble snails) along two transects parallel to the shoreline
- comparing fauna in open mud to that associated with dead shell microhabitats
- Document invertebrate adaptations for life in this habitat, focusing on