Characterizing surface epifauna and algae that live on intertidal substrates can give valuable information on the habitat of the lower beach. They are important components of the nearshore food web, and are good indicators of biodiversity and physical parameters. Invertebrate and algae assemblages may change depending on shoreline armoring, winter storms, and sediment types. Quadrat sampling can be concurrent with eelgrass and sediment sampling.
The recommended protocol is based on methods used in the SCALE project, which also aligns with part of the sampling used by the Sound Water Stewards , see a publication on their data, and their EZ-ID guides for help in identifying organisms. Both protocols can be uploaded to the database.