Uncover hidden gems and explore the beautiful coastline with the kids…all while learning about nature in the wonderful art of rock pooling!
Holidaying in the UK, as we’ve recently discovered, is full of wonderful surprises. Well, we’ve honed into one nature spot in particular ahead of National Marine Week – the incredible rock pool! Rock pooling is an increasingly popular activity, especially if you’re looking for cheap and fun things to do during the summer holidays.
While you’ve heard of rocks, and you’ve evidently heard of pools, some people are left wondering: ‘what exactly is rock pooling?’ This simple, affordable activity is a summertime tradition on the beach, where anyone can explore the hidden world of the sea’s fascinating creatures.
As National Marine Week begins on Saturday, we got in touch with North Wales Wildlife Trust for some tips on how to go rock pooling like a pro this season! Kate Martin, National Trust Marine Biologist said: “As the tide goes out, the secrets of the sea are revealed in the glittering rock pools left behind. Clamber, crouch, peer and scoop on a rock-strewn beach, to discover wonders in your private pocket of ocean life.”
When and how to go rock pooling?
Kate added: “It’s best to go rock pooling on a day when it’s dry and calm. This will keep the surface of a rock pool still, so it’s easier to see what’s below the water. You might see small fish such as a goby, butterfish or blenny. If you’re lucky you might spot a pipefish, which looks like a swimming shoelace and is related to the seahorse.
“You’ll want to get your hands wet to truly explore what lies beneath the water. Watch your fingers as they sink into the pool – do they look different as they move? How does the water feel? Search for some seaweed or other plant life with your hands. Can you describe its texture or smell? What else can you discover with your eyes, ears, fingers or nose? Be gentle as you go and watch out for those cheeky crabs.
“Pick up rocks and you may see a green shore crab or porcelain crab scuttle out. Look out for edible crabs, which often look like pebbles, and squat lobsters. Beware of the red-eyed blue velvet swimming crab though, as it can nip.”
Here’s exactly how to go rock pooling like a pro this summer...