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People have been asking about these strange 'bumps' on the beach. There are usually only two culprits, either mole crabs or olive snails. To find out you must dig a little...this time it happened to be purple olive snails (Callianax biplicata). When the tide goes out these snails quickly burrow into the sand in order to stay wet and for added protection from predators.
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Harbor seal pups are still showing up on local beaches. This time of year some are already on their own. They only stay with and nurse from their mother for 3-4 weeks before embarking on life's adventure on their own. Please remember they still need a place to rest, learning to hunt can be very tiring. Give them space and enjoy their cuteness from afar.
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Beautiful weather and great low tides all weekend, time to get out and enjoy nature!
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What's that blob!?! The Pacific ocean hosts a variety of gelatinous species, and depending on the tide, they end up along Oregon's shore lines. This summer, our beach has been inundated with one species in particular: the water jelly.
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The first day of the Seaside Beach Discovery Program is going great! It is a bit drizzly but we found some awesome critters to share with people. The Seaside Beach Discovery Program is a free program which runs on Saturdays and Sundays from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. (though it is weather dependent). We are set up in front of the Aquarium, so come on down and see what we've discovered!
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Wow, how time flies! Happy birthday Scully, our sweet girl turns 20 today.
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Did you know? Plumose anemones have two types of tentacles. The crown of tentacles, iconic to sea anemones, are used for feeding but the less common (and rarely noticed in the wild) are used for defense. These defensive tentacles are also laced with stinging cells but these ones can extend 3 to 4 times their resting length and shoot right out from the body wall of the sea anemone. They search the water around them, looking for other sea anemones with different genetics. If successfully found, the defensive tentacles (called acontia) will kill any other cells it comes in contact with, often killing the intruding anemone. Can you see this anemones acontia? We are careful to space each sea anemone far away from one another so that they do not accidentally attack their neighbor.
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A good reminder, thank you ODFW!
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On June 9th, 2018 a 5.5 foot female northern right whale dolphin (Lissodelphis borealis) washed ashore on Manzanita Beach on the Oregon Coast. These beautiful animals tend to live much further south and in deeper offshore waters (although they can range as far north as Alaska). Distribution depends on ocean conditions. Both north and south movements have been documented in association with changes in water temperature (moving south during colder water temperature periods and north during warmer water periods). Since 1995, when the Seaside Aquarium became involved with the Northern Oregon/Southern Washington Marine Mammal Stranding Network, we have only seen four of these unique dolphins. Named after the northern right whale, which also does not have a dorsal fin, the northern right whale dolphin is known to travel in groups of up to 2,000 individuals, although they are more often is found in social groups of 200-300. They are also often found in association with other cetacean species, such as Pacific white-sided dolphins, humpback whales, and Dall's porpoise. The largest threat to to these pelagic dolphins is from high-sea drift nets. Unregulated until recently, it was believed that these drift nets were responsible for a 24 to 73% population decline. Today high-sea drift nets in Oregon and California are required by law to use pingerdevices that deliver acoustic warnings into the water column to reduce cetacean by-catch. This particular animal was picked up by the Seaside Aquarium and transferred to Portland State University where a necropsy was preformed. Preliminary results from the necropsy were inconclusive and we are waiting on more test results to see if we can narrow down the cause of death. Though sad, this has given us a unique opportunity to learn a little more about this incredible species. A huge thanks to the Nehalem Bay State Park for reporting the animal so quickly.
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Great low tides all this week! Get out, explore, and share with us your favorite finds! Here are a few of ours....
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Sweet Shireen turns 12 years old today! Happy birthday big girl, we love you!
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Today is also Frankie's birthday! Happy birthday Miss Frankie, we love you!!!!
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Happy birthday Vivian! Today Vivian turns 12 years old and with age comes new tricks. Not only does Vivian splash to get fish, she now sticks her tongue out at you while drenching you. We are not sure where she picked that up from 😜 . Happy birthday silly girl!!
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Our oldest male turns 15 today! Happy birthday big Lew!!!
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14 years of splashin fun, happy birthday Reagan!!
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Today we are celebrating Miss Pretty Pinni's 5th birthday! Happy birthday baby girl!
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One of the sweetest seals in the world turns 19 today. Happy birthday Cosmo!!!
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An interesting new e-book just came out. If you are looking to go explore Cannon Beach you may want to give this a gander. https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07CZV4287/ref=sr_1_10?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1526018226&sr=1-10&keywords=oregon+coast
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Queen Greta turns 22 today! Happy birthday old girl!!!
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Happy Birthday Casey, we can't believe our little baby is already 4 years old!! Come on by and give Casey some extra love (and fish) today! Did we mention that we are also celebrating our 81st anniversary today. That's right, exactly 81 years ago today we opened our doors for the first time.
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Happy birthday Damian, can't believe your already five!!
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Check out the choas that insues when a wave unearths juvenile mole crabs.
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Millions of mole crabs! Like last year, it seems like there will be a lot of mole crabs around again this summer. Closely related to the horseshoe crab the mole crab is not a “true crab”. They can be quite abundant in the ‘swash zone’ of open, sandy beaches (the swash zone is the on-shore area covered by water as the ocean’s waves wash in and recede). Because the swash zone changes with every tide, the location of the mole crabs does as well: they skitter closer into shore and further out from shore as the tides rise and fall. They are common along the beaches of California, but as you travel further up the coast and the water becomes colder their population levels change. Oregon's mole crab population is reliant on coastal currents which bring the planktonic larva northward.
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Seaside Aquarium, 200 North Prom, Seaside, Oregon 97138 Tel: (503) 738-6211.