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Intertidal and subtidal biota of Redwood National Park
Intertidal and subtidal habitats of Redwood National Park including Prairie Creek Redwoods and Del Norte Coast Redwoods State Parks were surveyed over a two year period (July 1974 - June 1976). The coastline is approximately 31 miles long and trends generally north-south from latitude 41º15'W to 41º44'W, longitude 124º07'N. Approximately half the coastline is sand beach exposed to waves from a predominantly north-west direction. The fauna of beaches is generally sparse, with major species characterized as generalists. A semi-protected sand beach near the northern border of the Park supports a relatively diverse fauna of 32 species. Rocky intertidal areas are interspersed between pocket beaches and projecting headlands. Substrates in most accessible rocky intertidal locations are small to medium-sized boulders. Wave impact during winter storms and drift-log battering in rocky locations have resulted in the establishment of a biota dominated by annual species. During the survey, 168 species of invertebrate animals, 8 fish species, and 87 species of plants were identified. Subtidal rock bottoms are similar in biotic composition to those of northern California and Oregon, and contain many species of the low intertidal (infra-littoral fringe).