Rock pool habitat at Birling Gap

Gullies in the wave cut platform at low tide off Birling Gap

Looking out over the sea at high tide it is hard to imagine that under the water lots of rocky habitat is waiting to be explored twice a day as the changing tides expose the chalk platform.




Water shapes the wave cut platform as gullies and pools are carved into the chalk and flint providing the perfect place for hardy creatures to live in. The creatures here have adapted to their way of life enormously a close up look will reveal many crabs, fish and anemones.

The wave cut platform at low tide
Gullies in the wave cut platform at low tide off Birling Gap



The crab you are most likely to see in the rock pools perhaps hiding under a stone is the green shore crab. This crab feeds on small animals either dead or alive.

Sea weeds are in fact not flowering plants but algae with a simpler structure than the higher plants. But one thing they have in common is that they all produce their own food with chlorophyll, the chemical that produces the green colour in plants. One of the commoner sea weeds to be found in the pool and gullies is the coral like Coral weed that has a pink chalky appearance.