Turnstones on Roa Island

P4110002

Male Eider.

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Turnstone (non-breeding plumage).

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Edible Crab.

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Sea Spider.

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Butterfish.

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Broad-clawed Porcelain Crab.

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Chiton (possibly Lepidochitona cinerea).

P4110041

Starfish…

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…walking.

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Snot?

P4110046

Herring Gull.

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Juvenile Herring Gull (probably).

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Roa Island just keeps on giving and giving. Every visit throws up something new. This time both the wind and the water were perishingly cold and we didn’t find quite the same abundance as usual. Apart, that is, from B, who has an eagle eye for these things. Sea Spiders and Chitons are both new to me. Sea Spiders aren’t actually spiders, but do have an extraordinary resemblance, whilst Chitons are molluscs with eight overlapping plates. A found the Chiton – when she pointed it out in a shallow pool I assumed that what she’d seen was just a fragment of a seashell.

Whilst the others retired to the shelter of the car to eat their packed tea, I wandered back down to the end of the jetty and tried to capture images of flying gulls. Slightly quixotic behaviour, since the light was fading, and the gulls raced past downwind, but they were relatively stately when they flew back upwind so it wasn’t impossible.

Many of the stones we overturned were covered in eggs (or roe) of some kind. The roe, in turn, was often covered in Whelks. I couldn’t decided whether the Whelks were laying eggs or eating them. Several stones also had blobs of creamy white or emerald green…well, we’ve christened it ‘snot’, for want of any more accurate knowledge.

No doubt, we’ll be back again sometime this summer.

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Turnstones on Roa Island

5 thoughts on “Turnstones on Roa Island

  1. Fascinating images – that crab is well camouflaged.
    I always like eiders, although I only see them at our local wildfowl trust.
    And that starfish is beautiful!
    All the best 🙂

    1. beatingthebounds says:

      It’s a fascinating place. The diversity of life here in the channel between Walney Island and the mainland is immense and I’m always amazed by what we find.

    1. beatingthebounds says:

      I think the picture probably at least partly conveys how weird that was. It was almost entirely legs and looked even stranger when it was moving.

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