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Collecting seashells on the beaches of Sanibel, Captiva and the world

The Alphabet On A Cone Shell

Fist size Alphabet cone

Very Large Alphabet Cone

Holy Spelling Bee, Batman! This is the largest ALPHABET CONE I’ve ever seen come off the beach. It’s so big….I’m sure this one has the whole alphabet….. twice …on this beauty (heehee).

Large alphabet cone shell

Eileen’s Alphabet cone

I met Eileen and Rob coming off the beach on Sanibel’s side of Blind Pass (Turner Beach) and Eileen told me she found this humongo ALPHABET out in the water where the beach is forming a little sand tip (I’ll show you a picture of where in a minute) early this morning. As you can see in the first picture, it has some gunk still on it but I think this baby will clean up easily with a little tooth brush action using a little bleach and water. If they send pictures after its cleaned up (my fingers are crossed), I’ll share them with you as well.

Eileen and Rob are Shellers from PA

Eileen and Rob (PA)

Eileen and Rob have a Sanibel shelling trip planned for March but Rob told me he couldn’t wait another month since Eileen has been watching the happenings on the beaches and talking about my blog every day (really, he said that ! ;) …blush… blush.. I’m so flattered!) so he booked another trip this month to give to Eileen for Valentine’s Day. Awwww. What a Valentine! And then to find this awesome shell… wow… doesn’t get much better than that.

Collecting seashells

Collecting seashells on the “tip” of Sanibel’s Blind Pass

This is where Eileen found her ALPHABET CONE. I took this photo from the Sanibel side looking towards Captiva. You can see a tiny piece of the jetty of Captiva on furthest right side of the horizon. While I was there I met some other shelling sisters!

Ann with scents

Ann (Minnesota)

Ann was so sweet to run back to her car after we met to bring me some of her handmade aromatherapy “melts”. Thank you, Ann, they smell sooo good! Here are her seashell finds and while you check out her shells, check out her nails too..nice….

Ann's handful of shells

Ann’s handful of shells

Another shelling sister having a great time working the surf  in the shallow tip.

Sheller Teresa Tennessee

Teresa (Tennessee)

Then two more joined us so I  took a photo of the whole gang. They all hang out with us on iLoveShelling- What a fun morning!

Shellers at BP Sanibel

Mary, Debbie, Teresa and Ann

I think I did more socializing than shelling (shellers are so darn nice!) on the Sanibel side so I didn’t get many shell photos but I did get some shots from the Captiva side… where I started my day. I didn’t find anything exceptional like Eileen, but I enjoyed what I found.

Kitten's Paws

Kitten’s Paws everywhere!

Giant Bittersweet

I found several Bittersweets

Calico Clam

Lots of Calico Clams

All of these shells were found on the left side of the jetty on Captiva. The long sand bar that we saw last month is gone but there is a smaller sand bar that has formed at the end of the jetty. I didn’t find all of these shells together in the photo below but I did find them all within 10 minutes.

Shells on Captiva beach

Murex, conchs, an olive and a bittersweet

In the photo below, this is what the other side of the jetty looked like today. This is where I filmed the Sit N Sifters last week. Can you believe it? Now….. zip, zilch, zero shells.

Fisherman on Captiva

No shells, only a fisherman

So many of you are keeping up with the changes at Blind Pass.. so I took another short video this time from the Blind Pass bridge. When I pan over to the left side (the Sanibel side), I zoomed to the furthest sand tip where Eileen found her cone and where I met all of my new shelling sisters. I actually took this before I met them all but seeing alot of shelling going on out there, I knew it was a hot spot.

If you want a little more info on the history of the Blind Pass dredging, read this article To Dredge or Not To Dredge


  1. Alphabet cones are my absolute favorite find! Nice!

  2. Thanks for the exceptional video footage today. It really helped me to visualize exactly the areas you are talking about.

    WOW- NICE alphabet cone. That baby is huge. I cannot wait to get down there again.

    The constantly changing new sandbars are making for some interesting shelling.

  3. Pam, was a complete joy to meet you this AM….my cone is lovely….and a capper to my sweet husband’s Valentines trip. As you know, your blog was the inspiration to escape the cold and come to our beloved Sanibel. Will continue to follow your blog when we head back home…but look forward to our next shelling adventure. Will definitely follow with a cleaned up photo of the cone…(with A-Z…lol)…as well…as our trophy case of all our Sanibel finds. We have been most fortunate in our shell hunting. Would love to hook up again. Have included my email…feel free to get in touch with me. In the meantime…Happy Shelling.

  4. I was glad to see your picture of the shell you called Bittersweet. I have a few of these but never knew what kind of shell they were or their name. Are they a clam?

  5. Thank you so much for posting such great pictures, (especially today!). I began making a necklace with my shells from Sanibel and its actually turning out great! Great shells today, and pictures too! :)

  6. where are you standing, or what are you standing on, to take the video? I can’t quite figure out where you are and I’m trying to picture it. I’ll be back in May, and I’m counting down the days! Anna

  7. Anna- I was standing in the center of the Blind Pass bridge when I was taking the video. I start filming the Captiva edge of the pass and pan over to the Sanibel side. Susie- yes a bittersweet is a clam.
    Eileen- it was a pleasure to meet yall today!

  8. after reading the article about the dredging, was the subject of building a jetty even discussed at the meeting you attended? i certainly hope that they keep on top of it and never let it close up again. there are too many negative factors if it closes up again. hopefully, mother nature will be kind to ‘blind pass’!!! thanks for all the info you provide us with ….you are a treasure. ps…..i’m moving to the englewood area in march and i can’t wait! florida, here i come ;)

    • You’ll love Englewood. I’ve been here for 2 years now & love it. I am so glad I made the trip to see the sand bar while it was still there. That pass is the craziest thing I’ve ever seen. Looks like with that deer cowie & the hugh-mungo abc cone that the big shells are starting to roll in. Yay!

  9. The abundance of shells just amazes me.. I have never seen anything like it! Hopefully SOON!!….

  10. That Alphabet Cone is gorgeous!!! WOW!! And the Kitten’s Paws, Bittersweet, and the Calico Clam are so sharply colored….they are some of my favorites!!! Love them!!!!

  11. Hey Pam
    I met a master shelling woman, yesterday and again this morning – she has found several big, beautiful alphabets the last few days. Let alone the gorgeous huge horse conch she dug up today. You need to meet her too!
    We were chatting yesterday morning, in the dark, and she swoops up an alphy at my feet, I somehow didn’t see…

  12. I love Alphabets. Love them. Maybe even more than Junonia’s!

  13. Can someone tell me where the best place is to buy the sand backhoes I see everyone using? I would like to purchase one before my trip in March.

  14. Big time shellers, you are!!! I’m impressed!

  15. That alpha is great! Lots of terrific shells coming in right now. My hubby said I could take a week this spring and just go to Sanibel by myself. Wish I could justify that to myself!! Maybe I need to get back into the job market so I can feel better about that.

  16. Received my t-shirt and will be in Sanibel in less than 3 weeks! Just finished cleaning my shells from the last trip. No craft projects yet.

  17. Pam! This is so funny, but Eileen and Rob were in Jerry’s late Thursday night..I recognized them from your blog, which we all got a kick out of! What a great couple! And what an amazing alphabet cone, JB was so jealous as those are his favorites..Thanks for sharing your love of all the wonderful “free” pleasures of Sanibel.

    • That is so funny! I could have talked to Eileen and Rob for hours- great couple. And now they felt like rock stars in Jerry’s! hahah I LOVE it! Thank you, Sarah!

  18. Pam and Sarah, such a delight to meet you both….I have always believed there are no mistakes or “accidents” in this world…hence…no chance meetings. Perhaps it’s our love of shelling…but felt like I knew u both already. Anyhoo…cleaned up my cone…is GORGEOUS…and will be taking photos, as well as our “trophy” cases of shells. Would be nice to reconnect with you both, when we return to Sanibel in a few short weeks…for either some shelling or a cocktail. Has been cold since our return to winter in PA….I keep dreaming and reading your blog Pam. the meantime….may your favorite shell…be only a footstep away…

    • Eileen, I agree and would love to reconnect! Maybe we can find the other 1/2 of Pam’s elusive junonia! Can’t wait to see your cone pictures..

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