The Quiz: What tiny creature contributes to the colors of the San Francisco Bay salt ponds here?
A Brine shrimp
B Water mites
C Water skimmer bugs
Also known as artemia, brine shrimp are in the same family of critters once marketed in comic books as Sea-Monkeys. They feast on algae in salt ponds. Their life span depends on the salt content of the water, which in turn determines how much of the algae they can eat. Algae distribution determines the intensity of a salt pond’s color. Orange indicates mid-level salinity, green is low-level, and pink or red are signs of high salt content in an algae-rich pond.
The correct answer to this quiz is Brine shrimp.