Tuesday, May 8, second entry – The mudflats can be an exhausting place.
But, it is a LOT of fun!
Because the sediment is very wet and fine, in combination with hollow tunnels and tubes running underground where the critters are dense, it can become somewhat like quicksand. Once a boot sinks to a certain point and a vacuum-like suction starts to pull on it, the effort of trying to pull a foot out of the mud can cause the other foot to sink also.
Florida Tech Oceanography students outfoxed Mother Nature, but, if one is not very careful, one can become seriously stuck in the mud! Although, if one is willing to leave one’s boots behind and crawl out, little will happen aside from being muddy and shoeless. The Florida Tech Oceanography students did manage to get stuck repeatedly in the clinging mud. They used shovels, their friends, and sheer determination to stay mobile.
The secret? Don’t stand in one place for more than a few seconds, slide the feet, keep the weight on the balls of the feet, and avoid very hole-riddled, collapsing mud regions. Of course, these places are where the greatest density and diversity of critters will be found, and the Florida Tech Oceanography students were after the coolest animals!