Ft Ward beach walk

IMGP4208 IMGP4209 IMGP4212 IMGP4214  We went on a beach walk with naturalists (such a great group of ladies!) on Ft Ward beach Saturday. The boys had a fantastic time looking under rocks. Any time they squealed with a find, one of the ladies came over to tell us all about it. From learning that sea anemones clone themselves, to the fact that you don't want your finger pinched by a red rock crab ("It'll break it in half!") we had a great introduction to NW coastal life during low tide. Sam learned how to sex crabs, creating a great opportunity for talking fractions and percents...10 out of 10 were male. Hmmm...where were the females?
IMGP4215  Both pointing! IMGP4216  Showing Gramma how to tell male from female. Shape of a shell segment underneath - male is pointy, female is more rounded (it's where she stores her eggs). IMGP4221  This is Joanna. What a sweet lady, reading to them from her book. IMGP4225
IMGP4226  Hairy helmet crab and jingly shell. IMGP4227  There were surprisingly few kids. I'd made a note of the walk on my calendar before moving. I actually went through a whole bunch of activity listings before moving from Hawaii so that our calendar would be pre-loaded with fun things to do with the boys while we work hard on the less interesting moving-in part. IMGP4228 IMGP4231  Sam found a live red rock crab!
IMGP4232  Clams actually bore these holes in rocks! Wow! IMGP4234  Dead red rock crab. The lung-like things on the sides are gills. IMGP4235  This is the shell of one that molted. They crawl out of their old shell and are soft-shelled for a while as they make a new shell. IMGP4236  See the black tips on the claws? The hallmark of a red-rock crab.
photo 1 photo 2 photo 3 photo 4  The tidal swings are very large here.