Tide Pools: A Delicate Balance

Years ago, I experienced the complete destruction of tide pools in Palos Verdes when a couple of the few who do so, dumped lye into the pools to force the desired octopi out of their shelters leaving everything else dead. Years later, while the ranger at El Capitan State Park was on duty and chatting with the pretty girl in the kiosk, I watched two fellows pick every mussel from two large boulders at the point. Once black with mussel shells, they are now barren.

Less convenient pristine tide pools are incredibly sensitive. Once the public beach shows up, it’s just a matter of time before the critters in those pools meet the same grim fate found at publicly accessible beaches elsewhere when that single unbalanced soul decides to do whatever damage might be available.

Whenever possible, please save those less convenient pristine tide pools for, at the very least, a baseline for restoration. Unfortunately, the state of California is working feverishly to open the best of those remaining pristine tide pools to the public.


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