Intertidal Zone

The intertidal zone is the area of the marine shoreline that is exposed to air at low tide, and covered with seawater when the tide is high.

Altered Shorelines

Altered shorelines are those shorelines that have been modified from their original form with structures such as seawalls, docks and wharves.

Rocky Shorelines

Rocky shorelines are composed of solid bedrock with very little sediment. They are often exposed to tremendous forces from waves and currents

Sand/Gravel Shorelines

Sand and gravel shorelines have steep or shallow slopes and are composed of sediment that ranges from pebbles to fine quartz sand or muddy sand.

Boulder/Cobble Shorelines

This type of shoreline is found on rocky coasts where the local geology supplies a source of sediment

Pocket Beaches

Pocket beaches are small beaches, less than one kilometre long, that are formed between headlands in coves of rocky shorelines.


Estuaries are semi-enclosed bodies of water where fresh water from rivers or streams mingles with the salt water of the ocean.

Intertidal Mud Flats

Intertidal mud flats are shallow-sloped shoreline, with expanses of fine sediment. They are often components of estuaries, and are revealed when the tide goes out.

Salt Marshes

Salt marshes lie at the edge of land and sea, on wave-protected coasts. They are dominated by low-lying, salt-tolerant vegetation and are laced with networks of tidal channels and pools.

Coastal Sand Dunes

Sand dunes are present on shorelines where fine sediment is transported landward by a combination of wind and waves, and stabilized with vegetation.

Tidal Lagoons

A tidal lagoon is a protected body of ocean water that is semi-enclosed by a barrier such as a rocky headland or a sand spit.

Coastal Bluffs

Coastal bluffs are bedrock outcrops, rocky islets and steep cliffs that are located close to the ocean.