Late Summer communities of eelgrass and Sargassum are rich in shrimp and small invertebrates. A few passes with a plankton net demonstrates some of the diversity to be found in these habitats. Most species turn out to green, perfectly matching the eelgrass....but not so much the Sargassum. Sargassum is an introduced species of seaweed and local invertebrates have not had much time to evolve cryptic coloration to match it. In some areas of Puget Sound Sargassum has become invasive, covering large percentage of low intertidal rocky habitat to the exclusion of local seaweed species. These tiny shrimp and other crustaceans are food for a variety of fish and thus an important part of the food web.
See link to Eelgrass on this blog.
|Eelgrass Isopod and Grass Shrimp|
|Isopod - planktonic|