Hey there foldscopers! My marine science class had a lot of fun going to explore the tide pools at Carmel Point in Carmel, California! There was so much cool stuff to see!
Carmel Point is a Rocky Intertidal ecosystem residing along an erosional coastline and in the center of Carmel Bay. It was raining on the day that we went there but that didn’t prevent us from enjoying ourselves! It was low tide, which made it easier on us to find all of the critters. The site appeared to be very biologically diverse. Rocky substrate was covered in intertidal algae – mainly Deadman’s Fingers, Turkish Towel, and Tar Spot Algae. The tide pools are filled with intertidal fauna like anemones, limpets, sea stars, and turban snails.
Here is a picture of some algae growing on the rocks. In this picture alone you can already see 3 different species of algae!
Here is a picture of a bat star that I found! There are my favorite kind of star fish and we found a whole bunch of them spread out among the tide pools.
I was really excited to use my foldscope for the first time on this trip. For my first attempt, I collected a few samples of algae to look at up close. Here is an image of Giant Kelp that I took with my phone while using the foldscope.
I think these might be little grains of sand that were on the kelp. Pretty cool up close under the foldscope!
This image is a normal picture that I took of the kelp so that you could see what it looked like without viewing it under the microscope.
Then I tried looking at a different kelp species using the foldscope. I believe it is Feather Boa kelp!
I just wanted to thank the Prakash Lab at Stanford for giving us a chance to use these awesome foldscopes! I personally think that foldscopes are the best thing to happen to community science! They allow the public and students to get out into the field and explore a a whole new microscopic world that we wouldn’t have been able to before! Looking at algae and organisms at a microscopic level allows us to gain greater insight into the world of marine science and I am so grateful that I had a chance to be a part of this!
This field trip was a lot of fun and the foldscopes made it even better! 🙂