There are eggs everywhere in the Cornish rock pools this time of year and the warm weather and high pressure have provided perfect conditions for finding them.
Fish have moved inshore to protect their broods, crabs are carrying great mounds of eggs under their tails and sea slugs have started to lay their distinctive neat egg coils.
Blobs of ‘snot-worm’ eggs from the green leaf worm family adorn the seaweed.
The seas are also unusually summery for April. Currents of plankton-rich water have brought in large numbers of barrel jellyfish. Also known as dustbin-lid jellies, these creatures grow to nearly a metre across. Many of these harmless jellyfish (but perhaps not billions as the Daily Mail reported) are arriving around southern coasts and this week we’ve seen several stranded around Looe.
The first basking sharks have also been sighted around Cornwall, suggesting that we might have a longer than average season in which to spot these summer visitors.
As I walk on the cliffs I keep a hopeful eye out for their distinctive fins.
On the shoreline, there have been lots of ray and shark egg cases coming in and on one walk I spotted this lovely skeleton of a pink sea fan. Sea fans are delicate branching colonies of tiny anemone-like polyps. They grow just 1cm per year and are very vulnerable to trawling. This one is probably around 20 years old.
With the warm weather set to continue and some great low tides coming up this weekend, there are sure to be more exciting finds to report from the Cornish rock pools soon.