One of the things I was most excited for for this trip was to visit the coast. There’s not a lot of ocean in central Alberta you see. Today we just meandered down a few beaches and we did a quick hike in the Cutler City Wetlands Open Space. Finally, on our way home we revisited the riparian zone in the Rotary Reserve to see what we could see. After our success with the crayfish from last time, my friend and I named this place Buddy Creek. 🙂
The first beach we went to was a fairly scary place. I got really excited when I saw the first crab (even though it was dead and just washing up on shore) and I took so many pictures!
Then of course, the rest of the whole beach was littered with little corpses of crabs and mole crabs (or sand fleas). The crabs were limited to maybe 10 or 15 but there were hundreds of tiny dead mole crabs. HUNDREDS.
The only living things on the beach were birds, and we even saw the remains of several of those.
There was even a little dead shrimp guy. (as you can probably tell I am a knowledgeable sea animal identifier).
We took a break from the endless death and decay to wander around a little forested area called the Cutler City Wetlands Open Area. Can you guess what I was looking for? Did you guess salamanders? Well we found none, we didn’t find much of anything really except for this neat fungal growth on a fallen tree and another millipede in a damp muddy area.
The millipede was cool enough to take a video I thought. 🙂
Afterwards we went to a different beach, that had some exposed rocky pools! This was almost a teaser for the tide pooling I had planned later on in the trip. There were a couple of these tiny anemones scattered around but nothing too noteworthy.
As we were getting in the car to go home, a family was pointing out to see at a whale that we luckily got a glimpse of as its tail reared up for a deep dive. I wasn’t fast enough to get a picture but it was a lovely moment. Thanks ocean!
So Buddy Creek/Riparian zone in the Rotary Reserve was on the way back and since it wasn’t completely dark we thought we’d stop by again. If I remember correctly, there were a few crayfish but nothing spectacular until a deer popped into the ravine and munched on some leaves. The darkness prevented me from getting any good pictures but I got an okay video! 🙂 If the whale was a lovely moment, this was an unexpected magical moment. Thanks riparian zone!