Between Land and Ocean: Investigating Coastal Habitats

Tuesday, January 23, 2018 by Natasha I think about the Gulf of Maine, I usually think about the deep, open ocean waters, whales and schools of large fish. But the open ocean is just one part of the Gulf of Maine. Coastal habitats are found right between the land and the ocean, and are essential habitats for maintaining marine biodiversity in the entire oceanic system.

Coastal habitats include salt marshes, eel grasses and intertidal zones. They are some of the most productive and diverse ecosystems in the Gulf of Maine and can be found along the entire coastline of the gulf. These habitats serve as breeding grounds and protection for juvenile fish. Shore birds and open ocean species, like cod, will also use coastal habitats as a food source.

Coastal habitats in the Gulf of Maine are very unique spaces because they are only underwater for half of the day. Therefore, the plants and animals that live in these habitats must be adapted to a constant change in the water level.  

You can read more about one of my favorite coastal habitats, salt marshes, and more, here! 

What’s your favorite coastal habitat? Comment below!

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