Black-Fingered Mud Crab
Also known as the Atlantic mud crab, the black-fingered mud crab is muddy brown in color with stout, black-tipped claws. It can be found on oyster reefs and along the muddy bottoms of marshes.
The boring sponge is a thick, bright yellow sponge that grows on oyster reefs throughout the Chesapeake Bay.
Bristle worms are soft, segmented worms found along shorelines, mud flats and shallow waters throughout the Chesapeake Bay and its rivers.
Comb jellies are transparent, jelly-like invertebrates with bright, iridescent color bands. They live near the water’s surface in the middle and lower Chesapeake Bay.
Common Sea Star
The common sea star is a spiny-skinned echinoderm with five pointed arms. It lives mainly on rocks, jetties and pilings in the shallow, salty waters of the lower Chesapeake Bay.
The devil crayfish is a brownish red crustacean that resembles a miniature lobster. They typically have red-tipped claws. They can be found burrowing in forested areas where the water table is near the surface.
Flatworms are tiny, leaf-shaped worms that live among reefs, jetties and eelgrass meadows in the shallows of the middle and lower Chesapeake Bay.
The ghost anemone is a jelly-like invertebrate with a flat, rounded base and stinging tentacles at the top of an elongated stalk. It lives on rocks, reefs, pilings and other hard surfaces throughout the Chesapeake Bay.
Jellyfish are floating animals with gelatinous, umbrella-shaped bells and stinging tentacles.
Ephemeroptera is a group of 2,000 insect species commonly known as mayflies. They are known for their extremely short life spans and emergence in large numbers in the summer months.
Red Beard Sponge
The red beard sponge is a brightly colored sponge with thick, intertwining branches. It lives on rocks, reefs, piers, pilings and other hard surfaces in the middle and lower Chesapeake Bay.
The rusty crayfish is an invasive species that can be found in some rivers and streams in Maryland, New York, Pennsylvania, Virginia and West Virginia. It has a spot on either side of its back that is rusty in color.
Sea cucumbers are echinoderms with elongated, spiny-skinned bodies. They live at the bottom of the lower Chesapeake Bay’s deep, salty waters.
The sea squirt is a tunicate with a rounded, leathery body and two short siphons. It lives on reefs, pilings and other hard surfaces in the shallow waters of the middle and lower Chesapeake Bay.
Skeleton shrimp are tiny, gangly amphipods with transparent, stick-like bodies. They live attached to hydroids, sponges and vegetation in the middle and lower Chesapeake Bay.
Whip coral is an invertebrate with long, whip-like branches covered in tiny polyps. It lives on rocks, reefs and other hard surfaces throughout the lower Chesapeake Bay.
Pardosa milvina is a common species of wolf spider. They are black or brown with lengthwise stripes and long, thin legs.