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In this investigation, two different shores with different levels of exposure were surveyed. Based upon this survey, the level of exposure for each shore was determined using Ballantines exposure scale.

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Introduction

Introduction: Seashores can vary greatly in nature from one another. One of the factors that is most responsible for this diversity is the level of exposure to which the shore and the organisms that make it their home are subjected. In this investigation, two different shores with different levels of exposure were surveyed. Based upon this survey, the level of exposure for each shore was determined using Ballantines exposure scale. This scale uses the presence, absence and level of abundance of particular organisms to rate the level of exposure of the shore ranging from very exposed to very sheltered. Additionally, the shores were compared and important differences were noted. This comparison indicates which organisms prefer more exposed environments and which prefer more sheltered ones. In addition to the general survey, two specific projects were undertaken to more closely examine a particular aspect of the shores life. The first project, carried out at the more sheltered site (coordinates 22, 10 on the provided map), examined the length of brown algae and its relation to the age of the algae. Two species of brown algae were measured in this examination, Fucus vesiculosus and Ascophyllum nodosum. The presence of Polysiphonia lanosa on the Ascophyllum was also noted. ...read more.

Middle

Top shells, particularly Gibbula umbilicalis, and Littorina neritoides were abundant on the exposed shore but were not present on the sheltered shore. Also on the exposed shore Mytilus edulis , the mussels, and Paracentrotus lividus, the purple sea urchins, were abundant, and Actinea equina, the red sea anemones, were occasional while none of these species were found on the sheltered shore site. This being said however, there were similarities between the sites as well, for example neither site had more than a few individuals of Laminaria species or the other kelps other than Himanthalia elongata. Also Littorina saxatilis was absent on both shores and both shores had many Balanus species barnicles and Patella species limpets. Ballantine's exposure scale was then applied to both shores. Based on the presence and absence of the particluar species used by Ballantine to classify the shores, the more sheltered site can be classified as a fairly sheltered shore, although within this classification it leans toward the more sheltered side. This is because it did exhibit some characteristics of a sheltered shore even though in the end more characteristics pointed to the fairly sheltered classification. Using the same technique, the more exposed site can be classified as an exposed shore but like above it leans within this category, this time toward the very exposed side. ...read more.

Conclusion

No strong correlation was found for either the Patella species limpets (R = 0.405) or the Actinea equina (0.313). This is not wholey unexpected however, as the zone measured layed entirely in the eulittoral zone and the habitats in the different quadrants were therefore quite similar. Next the average, max, min and median number each species per 0.25 square meter was calculated (table 2). These results show, at least in this zone of the shore, that the Patella species is more common than the Actinea equina although, as in the first project, the sample size is again small. Table 2 Avg number per 0.25 square meter Max number per 0.25 square meter Min number per 0.25 square meter Median number per 0.25 square meter Patella species 76 144 27 81 Actinea equina 28 144 2 11 Conclusions: This investigation clearly shows how different shores are due to different levels of exposure. The first shore was classified as a fairly sheltered shore according to Ballantines exposure scale while the second was classified as an exposed shore. It was clearly visible in examining which organisms were present at each site that some organisms prefer the more sheltered type of shore while others prefer a more exposed environment. Additionally, some organisms were present in high numbers at both sites and therefore probablly don't care about the level of exposure as much as the organisms present at only one site or the other. ...read more.

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