Baffin Bay (Texas) - Flora and Fauna

Flora and Fauna

The lands around the bay are flat and dominated by grasslands and oak savanna; they are used for agriculture and cattle farming. Common tree and plant species include southern live oak (Quercus virginiana), prickly pear (Opuntia spp.), lime prickly-ash (Zanthoxylum fagara), greenbriar (Smilax spp.), sunflowers (Helianthus spp.), tanglehead (Heteropogon contortus), crinkleawn (Trachypogon spicatus), gulfdune paspalum (Paspalum monostachyum), fringed signalgrass (Urochloa ciliatissima), shrubby oxalis (Oxalis frutescens angustifolia), dayflower (Commelina spp.), Texas lantana (Lantana urticoides), Texas bullnettle (Cnidoscolus texanus), silverleaf nightshade (Solanum elaeagnifolium), crotons (Croton spp.) and Lindheimer tephrosia (Tephrosia lindheimeri).

The waters of the bay contain several species of annelids and 29 species of diatoms. The dominant mollusks are dwarf surf clams and Capitella capitata. The serpulid worm reefs are inhabited by crustaceans, polychaetes and mollusks. Invertebrates are represented by the endemic fiddler crab species Uca subcylindrica, which reside on dry soil, more than 20 meters from bay waters. The bay is a popular destination for recreational angling and is famous for its trophy spotted seatrout. Other species include cowfish, threadfin shad (in low salinity periods), pompano, black drum and burrowing goby, etc.

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