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Beach Naturalist program

Beach Naturalist program

Stroll along almost any local beach during low tide and you’ll see that the shore is alive!

Not only can you discover Puget Sound’s multitude of marine plants and animals—you may also encounter Seattle Aquarium beach naturalists: advocates for the living wonders on our shorelines who are eager to share their knowledge.

The Beach Naturalist program runs on low-tide days throughout the summer and on select winter evenings. The amazing people who operate it are local residents who care about Puget Sound beaches and want to help protect them. More than 200 people have volunteered to help community members learn about and enjoy our shorelines.

Beach naturalists know their beaches: they can help you explore gently to keep animals and their homes safe; tell you what sea stars eat; explain why barnacles stand on their heads; describe how moon snails lay their eggs; and so much more. Scroll down to see our low-tide programming for 2023!

Ask a beach naturalist! Need help identifying something? Email a photo to and a beach naturalist will respond to you as soon as we can.

An adult Seattle Aquarium Beach Naturalist kneeling down on a beach at low tide, pointing to a sea star on the beach and talking to a young girl.

If you visited the Beach Naturalist program this season, we would appreciate your feedback!

2023 Beach Naturalist Schedules
Carkeek Beach, Constellation/Richey Viewpoint (South Alki), Golden Gardens, Lincoln Beach, Richmond Beach, Saltwater State Park, Seahurst Beach
Dash Point State Park, Olympic Sculpture Park Beach, Redondo Beach
Des Moines Beach Park
Beach Naturalist video guides
Videoguías de Naturalistas de playa

Interested in becoming a beach naturalist? Complete our volunteer information request form.

If you have questions about the Beach Naturalist program, email or call (206) 693-6214.


  • King County Flood Control District
  • Lake Washington/Cedar/Sammamish Watershed Salmon Recovery Council
  • MMS Giving Foundation
  • Seattle Department of Parks and Recreation
  • The Boeing Company
  • The City of Burien
  • The City of Des Moines
  • The City of Shoreline
  • Washington State Parks
  • Watershed Ecosystem Forum for WRIA 9