Clams And Other Burrowing Animals

Clams, shrimp, and worms hide in the wetter parts of Windy Cove. All you see are the holes they make.

Being buried also helps keep them from being moved by the tides, when they don't want to be.

They get food and air (oxygen), and get rid of pee and poop, through the holes. When the holes get mashed the animal must make a new one, or die! 

Do them a favor! Most of the time walk on the dry part of the beach, closer to shore. There aren't any holes in that part of the Cove, and you'll keep your shoes cleaner, too.

Annotated Image for Internet Explorer users
Mudflat cutaway.  From: Morro Bay State Park Museum of Natural History, Dioramas 1962-2001, by Marion Enfield and Carol Medine.
clam-hole.jpg (19145 bytes) Inlet Hole (Clams, some worms, certain shrimp)

A flared, large-bore opening with small hillock. The sand is golden. Several hot-dog shaped fecal pellets lie nearby.
clam-hole2.jpg (34911 bytes) Outlet Hole

When sand is being expelled Underwater, this looks like a Volcano erupting. The last Eruption occurred after the Tide had receded, washing The side of the mound away.

A constricted, small opening with large hillock. The sand is gray. The fecal pellets lie further from the opening. The opening is smaller to increase velocity, like the choke on a shotgun. Notice the one-eigth-inch gravel lying about. The higher the speed, the larger the particle that can Be expelled.
bntnsclam.jpg (19316 bytes) Bent-Nosed Clam Shell
Macoma balthica

These are common at the Cove in winter.
  Little Neck Clam
  Gaper Clam
  Washington Clam

windy-cove home
Revised Monday, February 18, 2008 02:25:45 PM