Estuarine, intertidal, mud, partly enclosed, eulittoral

This substratum type differs from the mixed-fines in lacking a significant amount of sand, and consequently is softer and oozier. It is the most common habitat type in the heads of bays and inlets. Eelgrass and its associated invertebrate, fish, and bird fauna are less common in these habitats, as are hard shelled clams.

Habitat attributes

Class ID: 
Class name: 
Estuarine, intertidal, mud, partly enclosed, eulittoral
192.0 km (in WA)
Primary substrate: 
Secondary substrate: 
Tertiary substrate: 
Substrate stability: 
Substrate key details: 
Few stable surface features
Wave exposure: 
Protected, Very protected
Blue book classes: 
Estuarine intertidal mud: Partly enclosed and enclosed
Map/survey site examples: 
Fidalgo Bay, Dockton (Vashon), Anderson Cove (Hood Canal), much of Padilla Bay
Fish sampling sites: 
Beach Seine: Padilla Bay
Diagnostic species: 
  • Macoma nasuta
  • Macoma balthica
  • Upogebia pugettensis
  • Schoenoplectus maritimus
  • Triglochin maritima
  • Cymatogaster aggregata
  • Hypomesus pretiosus
  • Parophrys vetulus
  • Syngnathus leptorhynchus
  • Gasterosteus aculeatus
  • Leptocottus armatus
VEC common associates: 
Zostera marina
Mya arenaria
Cancer spp.
Crassostrea gigas
Species notes: