Crowded sea life: Even after the ocean recedes, water remains in the coastline's crevices to form tide pools teeming with marine life. Photographer Ted Morrison captured the flora and fauna living along the 40-mile-plus rocky shoreline of Maine's Acadia National Park. In this close-up view of a small tide pool, Morrison found the flourishing barnacle species Semibalanus balanoides (yellow), along with dark specks of blue mussel called Mytilus edulis and a Fucus rockweed species peeking out from the center of the water. These are the three most common marine organisms found on the New England shores, says University of Maine marine sciences professor Susan Brawley. The best times to uncover these small environments are during the low tides of the spring's full and new moons.
This article was originally published with the title "What Is It?" in Scientific American 307, 1, 24 (July 2012)