I have the pleasure of being beside the waters of the Intercoastal Waterway throughout much of the summer and some brief stretches during the winter. This is a great place to really appreciate the Sea isle City bay wildlife and learn a thing or two about nature.
One of a number of interesting species I see along the Sea Isle City (SIC), New Jersey bay are sea urchins. They are usually suspended just above or just below the water surface as they hang onto the sides of a dock or bulkhead.
I am not an oceanographer so you may need to give me a little leeway here (lol) but after some rudimentary research it seems that I am looking at the purple sea urchin. I has one to two inch long spines and purple color. I’ve heard people refer to it as a sea anomie but I think they are more poisonous and not the ones I (may or may not) have identified here. Regardless don’t step on or tough these these as the points are meant for protection and will stick you.
Apparently, the purple sea urchin is comfortable resting on these docks as they mainly eat decaying matter. Old kelp, algae, decaying ocean life, plant matter, they eat all of this.
Good to know something helping to keep the bay water clean.