The Port of San Diego is a beautiful, natural waterfront in California. The port was established in 1962 under the Port Act and is one of the busiest ports in the United States. While the port is known for its commerce, it’s also home to many sea animals.
Below, we’ll take a closer look at this port and list some of the most common animals that live at the bottom.
What is the Port of San Diego?
The Port of San Diego is a self-sustaining district located on San Diego Bay in southwestern San Diego County, California. It was established in 1963 by an act of the California State Legislature.
The port has two terminals that receive cargo from all over the world. Furthermore, it is also a major cruise ship destination, with two cruise ship terminals. The port handles over 3 million cruise passengers a year.
In addition to cargo and cruise operations, this port also hosts a variety of other activities, including fishing, boat tours, and whale watching. The Port also has several parks and attractions, including the USS Midway Museum, the Maritime Museum of San Diego, and the San Diego Bay National Wildlife Refuge.
Most people know this port for its economic effects. It generates billions of dollars annually and provides jobs for 55,000 people in San Diego.
This port is a vital part of the US economy.
How Deep is Port San Diego?
This port is a natural harbor with depths ranging between 25 to 50 feet. Therefore, the harbor is the ideal depth for cargo shipping, as it allows large ships to exit and enter the port with ease.
The Port has some areas that are 25 feet deep and others that are 50 feet deep. Cargo ships typically use the deeper areas; however, the shallower areas are reserved for recreational boating.
What Lives At the Bottom of the Port of San Diego?
The bottom of the Port of San Diego is home to many kinds of marine life. You’ll find several types of fish, including halibut, rockfish, lingcod, and striped bass. These fish like the port’s deep waters, which provide them with food and shelter.
You’ll also find several kinds of invertebrates, like crabs, shrimp, clams, and mussels. These are an important part of the food chain around the port, as they often feed the fish. These creatures live on the literal bottom of the seafloor, in many cases.
Of course, plants live on the bottom, too. Eelgrass and kelp are the most common. These provide shelter and food for marine life. They also help filter the water around the port.
Rare Animals of the Port of San Diego
The Short-tailed Albatross is a large seabird listed as endangered. It’s known for its long, slender beak and distinctive black-and-white feathers. These birds are usually found in the Pacific Ocean, but they may occasionally visit this port.
California Least Tern
This small seabird is also labeled as endangered by the IUCN. They are found in coastal areas and have been known to nest in the Port of San Diego. However, because they are endangered, they are still a rare sight.
The Desert Pupfish is a small fish that’s listed as endangered by the IUCN. They are found in only a few isolated desert springs in the southwestern United States, making them one of the rarest fish in the world.
However, they can survive in the Port of San Diego, though they are not permanent residents.
San Diego Fairy Shrimp
The IUCN lists these tiny crustaceans as endangered. They live in a few saltwater marshes in San Diego County, and that’s it. Because of their very small range, they are extremely rare.
They’re particularly sensitive to pollution, too.
- The Port of San Diego is the 11th busiest port in the United States regarding cargo tonnage.
- It is the 10th busiest cruise port in the world.
- It generates over $10 billion in economic activity each year.
- It provides jobs for over 55,000 people in the San Diego area.
- This port is home to the USS Midway Museum, the Maritime Museum of San Diego, and the San Diego Bay National Wildlife Refuge.
- The Port of San Diego also has several parks and attractions, including Seaport Village, the Embarcadero, and the Gaslamp Quarter.
- This port is a major transportation hub, with connections to the San Diego International Airport, the San Diego Trolley, and the San Diego Metropolitan Transit System.
- This port is also a major military base, with the Naval Base San Diego located on its shores.
The photo featured at the top of this post is © Sean Pavone/Shutterstock.com
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