This element will focus on sandy beach invertebrates at Malibu Lagoon. These organisms are important food sources for many of the birds and other animals found on the beaches of Malibu. Many of these organisms rely on the presence of kelp wrack to supply them with shelter and food. Beach grooming, a process completed to in order to remove kelp and other items from beaches for human use, occurs on many southern California beaches. The removal of this kelp can impact the diversity and abundance of sandy beach organisms, which can then have affects on populations that use these invertebrates as food, such as shorebirds.
Investigate the diversity, distribution, and abundance of sandy beach organisms in groomed and non-groomed areas around Malibu Lagoon.
What will the students be doing?
- Students will conduct organized sampling of beach using transect tapes, shovels, and seine nets.
- Count, identify, and record any organisms that are found and the presence/absence of kelp wrack.
- Compare abundance of organisms between areas with wrack and without.