Australia Beach

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On the beach in front of the Ames Fish House, Museum educators help visitors learn about the marine environment during the warmer months. Among the specimens that can be seen are some the “blue immigrants” — species that have hitched rides on the bottom of ships, or more recently in ballast water carried by large cargo ships. Local examples are the Green Crab, introduced in the 1700s, the European Common Periwinkle, introduced in the 1840s, Dead Man’s Fingers (Codium) introduced in 1957, and the Asian Shore Crab, introduced in 1988. With few natural predators, these species have sometimes overpopulated, changing the balance of species in their new environments.

Don’t forget to visit the Australia Coasting Schooner exhibit next door; your kids will love exploring this ship’s skeleton!