Shoreline habitat classifications

ERMA satellite map image showing linear shore typesSearch habitat classifications and diagnostic species for the shorelines of Puget Sound and the Washington coast. Classifications are adapted from the Washington State ShoreZone Inventory linear shoreline data.*

View interactive map in ERMA

Select a class name below to view more detail. To re-sort table data, select a column heading. ID numbers are based on a scale of habitat units determined by the Shorezone mapping system. Numbers for habitats not occurring in the state of Washington are not included. 

*This 2014 update was conducted by Megan Dethier, author of the original 1990 publication A marine and estuarine habitat classification system for Washington State created for the Washington Natural Heritage Program. The 2014 fish species analysis was conducted by Charles Simenstad. The project was commissioned for the Encyclopedia of Puget Sound by the University of Washington Puget Sound Institute. Read more about this update.

ID Class name kmsort descending Primary Substrate Stability Substrate key details Wave exposure
55 Estuarine, intertidal, boulder, lagoon, eulittoral 0.3 Bedrock Stable No mobile sediment Prot, Very Prot
72 Estuarine, intertidal, gravel, channel/slough, eulittoral 0.6 Gravel Mobile Few stable surface features Protected
81 Estuarine, intertidal, mud, open, eulittoral 0.8 Mud Mobile Few stable surface features Semi-protected
7 Marine, intertidal, boulder, semi-protected, eulittoral 2.0 Bedrock Stable No sediment Semi-protected
51 Estuarine, intertidal, bedrock, lagoon, eulittoral 2.0 Bedrock Stable No mobile sediment Prot, Very Prot
59 Estuarine, intertidal, hardpan, lagoon, eulittoral 2.0 Hardpan Stable Semi-solid rock, some overlying sand Protected
65 Estuarine, intertidal, mixed coarse, open, eulittoral 2.0 Gravel Semi-stable surface features Some stable surface features (cobbles) Semi-protected
6 Marine, intertidal, boulder, partially exposed, eulittoral 3.0 Bedrock Stable No sediment except sand scour at some sites Semi-exposed
68 Estuarine, intertidal, mixed coarse, channel/slough, eulittoral 3.0 Gravel Semi-stable surface features Some stable surface features (cobbles) Protected, Very protected
36 Marine, intertidal, mud, protected, eulittoral 3.0 Mud Mobile No stable surface features; sediments mostly fine Protected, Very protected
71 Estuarine, intertidal, gravel, lagoon, eulittoral 3.0 Gravel Mobile Few stable surface features Protected
24 Marine, intertidal, gravel, protected, eulittoral 3.0 Gravel Mobile No stable surface features Protected
93 Estuarine, intertidal, artificial, open, eulittoral 4.0 Rock, concrete, wood Stable Human-placed, hard Semi-exposed, Semi-protected
85 Estuarine, intertidal, organic, open, eulittoral 6.0 Organic Stabilized by vegetation No stable surface features Protected, Very protected
45 Marine, intertidal, artificial, exposed, eulittoral 7.0 Rock, concrete, wood Stable Human-placed, hard Exposed
23 Marine, intertidal, gravel, semi-protected, eulittoral 7.0 Gravel Mobile No stable surface features Semi-protected, Protected
8 Marine, intertidal, boulder, protected, eulittoral 8.0 Bedrock Stable No sediment except surface siltation Protected, Very protected
14 Marine, intertidal, cobble, partially exposed, eulittoral 8.0 Cobble Mobile Sand under (unstable) cobbles at some sites Semi-exposed
46 Marine, intertidal, artificial, partially exposed, eulittoral 8.0 Rock, concrete, wood Stable Human-placed, hard Semi-exposed
48 Marine, intertidal, artificial, protected, eulittoral 8.0 Rock, concrete, wood Stable Human-placed, hard Protected
31 Marine, intertidal, mixed fine, semi-protected, eulittoral 9.0 Sand Mobile Pebble, sand, mud (few stable surface features) Semi-protected
47 Marine, intertidal, artificial, semi-protected, eulittoral 10.0 Rock, concrete, wood Stable Human-placed, hard Semi-protected
69 Estuarine, intertidal, gravel, open, eulittoral 11.0 Gravel Mobile Few stable surface features Semi-exposed, Semi-protected
5 Marine, intertidal, boulder, exposed, eulittoral 13.0 Bedrock Stable No sediment except sand scour at some sites Exposed
73 Estuarine, intertidal, sand, open, eulittoral 14.0 Sand Mobile No stable surface features Semi-exposed, Semi-protected
77 Estuarine, intertidal, mixed fine, open, eulittoral 15.0 Sand Mobile Few stable surface features Semi-protected, Protected
67 Estuarine, intertidal, mixed coarse, lagoon, eulittoral 16.0 Gravel Semi-stable surface features Some stable surface features (cobbles) Protected, Very protected
28 Marine, intertidal, sand, protected, eulittoral 19.0 Sand Mobile Pebble, sand, mud (few stable surface features) Protected
27 Marine, intertidal, sand, semi -protected, eulittoral 22.0 Sand Mobile Sand, no stable features Semi-protected
54 Estuarine, intertidal, boulder, partly enclosed, eulittoral 28.0 Boulder Stable No mobile sediment Semi-protected
70 Estuarine, intertidal, gravel, partly enclosed, eulittoral 30.0 Gravel Mobile Few stable surface features Semi-exposed, Semi-protected
17 Marine, intertidal, mixed coarse, exposed, eulittoral 30.0 Gravel Semi-stable surface features Cobble, pebble, sand (some stable surface features) Exposed, Semi-exposed
87 Estuarine, intertidal, organic, lagoon, eulittoral 31.0 Organic Stabilized by vegetation No stable surface features Protected, Very protected
76 Estuarine, intertidal, sand, channel/slough, eulittoral 32.0 Sand Stabilized by vegetation Marsh vegetation Protected, Very protected
26 Marine, intertidal, sand, partially exposed, eulittoral 38.0 Sand Mobile Sand, no stable features Semi-exposed, Semi-protected
75 Estuarine, intertidal, sand, lagoon, eulittoral 39.0 Sand Stabilized by vegetation Marsh vegetation Protected, Very protected
19 Marine, intertidal, mixed coarse, semi-protected, eulittoral 58.0 Gravel Semi-stable surface features Cobble, pebble, sand (some stable surface features) Semi-protected
22 Marine, intertidal, gravel, partially exposed, eulittoral 67.0 Gravel Mobile No stable surface features Exposed, Semi-exposed, Semi-protected
86 Estuarine, intertidal, organic, partly enclosed, eulittoral 69.0 Organic Stabilized by vegetation No stable surface features Protected, Very protected
58 Estuarine, intertidal, hardpan, partly enclosed, eulittoral 70.0 Hardpan Stable Semi-solid rock, some overlying sand Semi-protected
1 Marine, intertidal, bedrock, exposed, eulittoral 72.0 Bedrock Stable No sediment except sand scour at some sites Exposed
18 Marine, intertidal, mixed coarse, partially exposed, eulittoral 75.0 Gravel Semi-stable surface features Cobble, pebble, sand (some stable surface features) Semi-exposed
49 Estuarine, intertidal, bedrock, open, eulittoral 76.0 Bedrock Stable No mobile sediment Semi-exposed
20 Marine, intertidal, mixed coarse, protected, eulittoral 76.0 Gravel Semi-stable surface features Cobble, pebble, sand (some stable surface features) Protected
32 Marine, intertidal, mixed fine, protected, eulittoral 78.0 Sand Mobile Pebble, sand, mud (few stable surface features) Protected, Very protected
50 Estuarine, intertidal, bedrock, partly enclosed, eulittoral 86.0 Bedrock Stable No mobile sediment Semi-protected
88 Estuarine, intertidal, organic, channel/slough, eulittoral 103.0 Organic Stabilized by vegetation No stable surface features Protected, Very protected
95 Estuarine, intertidal, artificial, lagoon, eulittoral 107.0 Stable Human-placed, hard Protected, Very protected
2 Marine, intertidal, bedrock, partially exposed, eulittoral 114.0 Bedrock Stable No sediment except sand scour at some sites Semi-exposed
4 Marine, intertidal, bedrock, protected, eulittoral 119.0 Bedrock Stable No sediment except surface siltation Protected, Very protected
3 Marine, intertidal, bedrock, semi-protected, eulittoral 123.0 Bedrock Stable No sediment Semi-protected
83 Estuarine, intertidal, mud, lagoon, eulittoral 126.0 Mud Mobile Few stable surface features Protected, Very protected
79 Estuarine, intertidal, mixed fine, lagoon, eulittoral 149.0 Sand Mobile Few stable surface features Protected, Very protected
25 Marine, intertidal, sand, exposed, eulittoral 190.0 Sand Mobile Sand, no stable features Exposed, Semi-exposed
82 Estuarine, intertidal, mud, partly enclosed, eulittoral 192.0 Mud Mobile Few stable surface features Protected, Very protected
94 Estuarine, intertidal, artificial, partly enclosed, eulittoral 206.0 Rock, concrete, wood Stable Human-placed, hard Semi-protected, Protected
90 Estuarine, intertidal, reef, partly enclosed, eulittoral 429.0 Organic Stabilized by vegetation No stable surface features Protected, Very protected
78 Estuarine, intertidal, mixed fine, partly enclosed, eulittoral 555.0 Sand Mobile Few stable surface features Semi-protected, Protected
74 Estuarine, intertidal, sand, partly enclosed, eulittoral 565.0 Sand Mobile No stable surface features Semi-protected, Protected
66 Estuarine, intertidal, mixed coarse, partly enclosed, eulittoral 792.0 Gravel Semi-stable surface features Some stable surface features (cobbles) Semi-protected, Protected