As you walk along the seashore there are all sorts of wildlife to be found, much of it that will not be found inland. Some plants are only found near the sea as they are specially adapted to living on shingle. Seabirds feed on creatures that are only found in the sea or along the shore. Then there is all the wildlife that lives actually in the sea or within the intertidal zone. A walk along the shore can be very rewarding. More information about the shells that can be found washed up along our beach can be seen on the Sea Shells page.
Our stretch of shore is not really suitable for breeding seabirds so on a typical visit you will not see many different species. Many different birds fly along our stretch of coast and a few will rest here briefly, but unless you are a regular birdwatcher you are unlikely to spot many. The most common birds you are likely to see are shown here.
Many of the plants that can be found along the shore can also be found inland, but the first two shown below are shingle specialists. Vegetated shingle is a fragile ecosystem and is protected as it is internationally rare, so please be careful not to damage any of the plants growing on the shingle.
The Strandline is the area just above the high tide line where all sorts of things get washed up on the beach by the sea at high tide. This line is not static, but migrates up and down the beach as the tides alternate between spring and neap with the lunar cycle. Consequently you may find several lines of debris down the beach. The strandline is a good place to look for shells. The shells likely to be found along our shore are shown on the Shells page.
The Intertidal Zone
As the tide goes out a whole range of sealife is exposed that normally lives beneath the surface but can survive for a few hours out of the water or in a shallow rock pool.
Seaweed grows on the seabed and although many can be found at low tide lying flat on rocks, at high tide they form an underwater forest stretching up towards the light. At low tide some can be found in the many rock pools, where they look most natural. Seaweeds are marine algae and are split into three main groups by colour; red, brown and green. One of each group is shown below.