Explore the Shore

Ever wonder what it’s like to run a finger over the back of a prickly pink sea star? Or hold a tiny ocean crab in the palm of your hand? Or stroll along the beach at low tide, learning about the animals there and helping catalog them for scientific research?

Become a citizen scientist for a day at Owen Beach! Join Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium naturalists for Explore the Shore low tide beach walks. This is more than just a walk on the beach. With the help of a naturalist, you will identify tide pool animals and record their presence and location to add to the scientific NatureMapping database. Explore the Shore is a fun and exciting opportunity to participate in scientific research while learning about the biological diversity of local beaches and how to protect them.

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Who can Explore the Shore?
We recommend this walk for ages 5 and up. Families will be placed in groups depending on interests and abilities. For the great adventurers, you may walk up to 1.5 miles round trip from Owen Beach south to the Boat House and back.

Do I need to know anything about beach life?
No! These walks are great for all knowledge levels. Each group will be led by a trained naturalist who will give a short introduction to tide pool animals. Groups will also receive a field guide to common animals found along the shore.

What should I bring?
Come prepared with sunscreen, a hat, and weather-appropriate clothing. Sturdy, closed-toed shoes are recommended for walking on a rocky beach with lots of barnacles.

How do I sign up? How much does it cost?
No RSVP is needed. Meet on the beach near the Owen Beach parking lot. Explore the Shore is FREE.

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Explore the Shore beach walks are timed to take advantage of the low tides that reveal many of Puget Sound’s most interesting shoreline creatures.

Check-in begins 30 minutes before the scheduled start time. At the meet-up times listed below, participants can get a brief introduction to the day before the walk begins. Beach walks are designed to last about two hours, though you may want to explore the beach for a longer time.

Sunday, June 15 at 12:30
Thursday, June 26 at 10:30
Friday, July 11 at 10:00
Monday, July 14 at 12:15
Monday, August 11 at 11:15
 
For more information, contact Amy Hale at 253.404.3665 or amy.hale@pdza.org.


• • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •   TIPTOE THROUGH TIDEPOOLS   • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •
Looking for another beach exploration adventure? Join naturalists from the Tacoma Nature Center during low-tide beach walks at Titlow Beach.


Take the Pledge! Sign this sheet to remind yourself to trek the tidepools responsibly.