Virutal Coastal Geology Field Trip

Part 1: BEACH VEGETATION (32 points)

  1. What kind of beach is Caladesi Island? (3)
  2. What are the four major factors on a beach that plants have to adapt to? (4)
  3. What are two ways plants adapt to high amounts of sunlight and avoid dehydration? (4)
  4. List 3 plants and describe their adaptations. (6: 3 for listing, 3 for describing them)
  5. What do plants at the top of the dunes have to adapt to the most? (3) What are some adaptations they use to combat these forces? (3)
  6. What is the term for the specialized rooting systems connecting some plants? Think about how the root systems of these plants grow. (ex. morning glories, sea purslane, sea oats) (2)
  7. How are the plants stabilizing the sediment? (3)
  8. Describe a plant that you thought was interesting or did not know prior to this section of the online field trip. (4)


  1. What is the name of the current that moves parallel to the shoreline? (2)
  2. What are the two main sources of energy on a beach that distribute sediments? (2)
  3. Explain how we measure currents. (4)
  4. How does water movement differ from close-to-shore to further offshore? (2) What factors are influencing this? (2)

Part 3: TIDAL WAVE ENERGY (6 points)

  1. What are the two ways wave energy moves sediment? (2)
  2. Explain how waves are able to sort sediments. (2) Where would you find the coarsest sediments being moved by wave energy? (2)

Part 4: SEDIMENT CORING (12 points)

  1. Why do we look at sediment cores? (2) What can they tell us? (2)
  2. What does a shell layer in a sediment core represent? (2)
  3. What is cross bedding? (3)
  4. What does a fine dark layer of buildup in a core represent? (3)


  1. Why do we do beach profiling? (1) Who would this information be beneficial to? (1)
  2. What are the four main parts of a barrier island beach system? (4)
  3. What is the name of the tool used to make beach profiles? (1) What is being measured with this tool? (1)