Archive for Periwinkles

Jul
11

I Spy Seashells And Beach Bling

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sw florida miniatures seashells

Looking at this top picture you will see most of the shells I found last evening at Fort Myers’ Bunche Beach. Can you identify most of them? While you try to figure out each of the shells… Wanna go on a little CYBER SHELLING hunt for shells with me? All righty then let’s play a little “I Spy”! Don’t mind the “dirty” bling (a mix of peat and other good stuff that gives food to so many living organisms)… just look for some of those sweet little minis that we all love by clicking on the next image to enlarge…

cyber shelling miniatures Bunche Beach Ft Myers

This will give you an idea of how “big” those little gems are by looking at my handful of sweet somethings…

handful of small shells fort myers florida

As much fun as it was collecting minis, I was tickled pink when Clark showed me his fave find… A ROSEATE SPOONBILL FEATHER.

roseate spoonbill feather bunche beach FL

We didn’t see any ROSEATE SPOONBILL birds but we did see immature WHITE IBIS birds. Ibis juveniles are mostly brown but these guys have started molting out of their plumage becoming adults.

juvenile ibis bunche beach fort myers florida

Here are four immature WHITE IBISES hanging out with a SNOWY EGRET and a BLUE HERON.

birds of Sanibel Fort myers sw Florida

It was a bird lovers paradise last night. I even saw the dance of the REDDISH EGRET…

reddish egret bunche beach fort myers

Before it got dark, we stopped at Sanibel Lighthouse Beach just in time to catch a beautiful RAINBOW…

rainbow over sanibel water shellers

Samuel, Sheila, Gene, Freida (Cape Coral, FL) and their family in the photo above must have hit the pot of gold under the rainbow. They found all of these in the water…

sea shells lighthouse beach sanibel florida

I found another pot of gold under the rainbow when I met Bill, Jody, Brooke, Brandon, Laura Beth and Gramma Kaye. A golden family of shellers from Alabama.

family Sanibel Island beach with rainbow

 Okay, did y’all identify most of the shells in the top picture? Errrr….I have to confess, once I got going on my own I.D.s (and put my reader glasses on), I realized that some of these shells weren’t as obvious as I thought. There were a few that I had to look up… like the PAPER BUBBLE and TURRET. I failed my own test! hahaha I hope you do better than I did! I know the photo doesn’t show both sides of the shell, but if you know what #8 is by looking at this photo or you have a better idea if I misidentified anything, please let me know. Whoops! How embarrassing! LOL (blush, blush)

1.   Bruised Nassa
2.   Paper Bubble – an AMBER GLASSY BUBBLE
3.   Marginella
4.   Rice Olive
5.   Florida Lyonsia
6.   Wentletrap
7.   Mortons Egg Cockle
8.   Ummm. Why did I put that in there? I have no idea what it is. LOL Best guess?
9.   Dark Cerith
10. Pitted Murex
11. Turret
12. Oh geez- I’m just going with baby whelk so cute!
13. Sparse Dove
14. Rose Petal Tellin
15. Antilles Glassy Bubble
16.  Fish Vertebra
17. West Indian False Cerith
18. Mangrove Periwinkle

Do you love shelling? Would you like to meet other shellers who love the beach and its treasures just as much as you do?  Do you want to learn more about shelling in Sanibel and the out island islands? Join us for Shellabaloo 3!

Island Inn Shellabaloo 3

Captiva Cruises Playtime

When you are about to get on a boat to go to a secluded island for a morning of shelling with a bunch of people who all LOVE SHELLING as much Shelling Sistahs Marilyn and Diane from Chicago…

marilyn diane i love shelling tee

And avid shellers Jessica (cute aqua backpack!) and Ben from Texas… It’s gonna be a good day!

jessica ben aqua camelback

As soon as I saw Rhonda (next photo) I had to tell her how cute her necklace was. She told me she made it…. then gave it to me off her neck! OMG What? Thank you! But really, this is how sweet she is….She would have given it to the first person who had liked it that much…

rhonda shell necklace

You know how I know this? Because as we all were waiting to get on the boat, Rachael had commented on her necklace too and she gave Rachael this bracelet she made. She has a heart of gold!

rachael shell bracelet

Needless to say, our iLoveShelling cruise to Cayo Costa on Saturday was a success. It was a perfect day. Awesome people, clear skies, calm water, gorgeous weather, aqua water…. and shells!

march shell collecting cayo costa florida

As soon as we got off the boat on Cayo Costa, lots of people scattered to their favorite areas to look for shells. Some went straight to the water and some went straight to the shell piles on the beach.

shelling gleaners cayo

Bill C. saw my photo above of the shellers above and said it reminded him of the painting “The Gleaners”. LOL It does! I just got a kick out of it so I had to share it with you too. I borrowed this image of Millet’s 1857 oil painting from Wikipedia to show the similarity…

300px-Jean-François_Millet_-_Gleaners_-_Google_Art_Project_2

 Within the first 5 minutes on the beach, Michele found an awesome WORM SHELL with the tip intact.

michele wormie cayo

I loooove to show people how to spot the BABY’S EARS and the mini shells while Clark shows the rest of the group he finds the OLIVES, CONCHS and the bigger shells. Here I am pointing out the treasures that hide in the beautiful fallen tree roots…

pam shell guide

There were hundreds of live CLOUDY PERIWINKLES!

cloudy periwinkles cayo florida

Sally from Sarasota was going for the minis…

sally with smalls

She was ready with her tupperware container. She has a nice WORMIE and ANGEL WING too.

fragile shells sally

She also found beautiful CANCELATE SEMELES. This is the only beach I ever see them…

cancelate semeles cayo

Okay one more thing… she found the biggest stinkin TUSK SHELL I’ve  ever seen…

large tusk shell

Look at all of these white shell bags filled with the bigger shells like OLIVES, SUNRAY VENUSES, WHELKS, CONCHS, WORM ROCK and CORAL!

white shell bags cayo

These were all found by this adorable family that just moved to Sanibel… Berkely, Matt, Loulie and Landon.

berkeley matt loulie landon cayo costa

These were their faves out of their shell bags…

shell faves scharf

I was thrilled at how many people wanted to share their favorite treasure with the group. So many of my faves too! BABY’S EARS,  WORMIES, SAND DOLLARS, OLIVES, VENUS SUNRAYS and ANGEL WINGS

march best shells cayo costa

Okay, I have to confess. I get overwhelmed when I meet so many awesome people that love this stuff as much as I do. I just want to drink it all in …so I forget to get names and I forget to take pictures of everything. I want to enjoy the moment so I want to apologize to these amazing folks that let me photograph your hands (in the photo above) but I didnt get all of your names. I know Rachael and Johnnie but if any of yall want to comment… I’d love to add your names. Awwww. I feel so badly … but look how cute they are!

cayo costa sheller cc

I almost just started calling everybody “Sue” and “Jim” (yall know who you are- heehee). Let me assure you, nobody was worried was I was calling them.  I do know that we all had a fabulous morning exploring the beautiful island of Cayo Costa finding treasures and making new shelling friends.  It is soooo much fun. Thanks to Captiva Cruises’ Captain Brian for the safe, smooth ride and Captain Yogi for the funny stories!

yogi captiva cruises

live starfish cayo

march cayo costa collecting

alternate tellin cayo

cayo costa trail adventure

 If you want to join me, Clark (Oops! see? I didn’t even get a picture of Clark working his shelling backhoe!), and a boatload of other shellers just like you… join us!

shelling adventures pam

 

Jul
06

Shell Raisers On The Beaches Of Sanibel

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live fighting conchs

Hundreds of live FIGHTING CONCHS raised out of the sand at Lighthouse Beach yesterday to take a look around as the tide was going out.

fighting conchs beach

I found one of the FIGHTING CONCHS hanging out in a tidal pool… but wait… I noticed something in the water beside it…

florida fighting conch egg case

This FLORIDA FIGHTING CONCH was laying EGGS! The eggs are released in a gelatinous egg string then sand adheres to its thick jelly-like sheath.

flighting conch egg string

I tried to get close enough to see how the eggs are released without disturbing this busy gal. If you look closely, you can see them shooting out! It’s that spout perpendicular to the eye. Go Momma! Raise some more shells!

Strombus alatus egg string

I think this is a FIGHTING CONCH EGG STRING as well…. but why would she lay her eggs without being in the water? I followed the trail from the string to a healthy FIGHTING CONCH about a yard away. Hmmm. Maybe that jelly like sheath protects them when the tide recedes. I dunno, but I hope she raises healthy shells and I sure love to find new things like this!

fighting conch dry egg string

Speaking of “raising shell”…. We met the Shell Raisers (The Shell Raisers on Facebook) at Blind Pass Sanibel! These 2 brothers, Eric and Chris, have been shelling all their lives and they even witnessed a BANDED TULIP laying eggs in their live shell tank.

shell raising brothers

Chris found that huge WHELK but put it back in the water since was occupied by a monster HERMIT CRAB. They were vacationing on Sanibel with their family from the east coast of Florida . Here are Chris and Eric with (from left to right) their mom Cheryl, Sarah, Amelia and Ava.

The shell raisers

Back at the Sanibel lighthouse, Linda (Pensacola, FL) was busy finding the mini shells…

linda mini shells lighthouse

She found a mega WENTLETRAP along with some other sweet minis…

lindas mini shells

Her best find was this gorgeous MANGROVE PERIWINKLE…

mangrove periwinkle sand

If you look closely you can see a beautiful purple lip…

mangrove periwinkle ap

Bobby (Houston TX) finally found what he was looking for…WENTLETRAPS!!

bobby wentletraps

I was asked a question on I Love Shelling Facebook page by Diane F  about a shell I.D. It was that ROSE WOLF SNAIL again! I told y’all I keep forgetting the name of that shell but now that I can remember the name,  I completely forgot to put it on my SEASHELL IDENTIFICATION page. This shell keeps stumping me some how! Thanks Diane for asking about this shell and sending such a beautiful picture of it. I’m going to use photo for my I.D page- Thank you!

rosy wolf snail shell sanibel

Okay, one more thing… I saw the dolphins playing near the pier last night and I just happened to video them racing along the shoreline in front of an unsuspecting family. This is no fancy video…just a little clip of our own little Sanibel Sea World… YouTube Preview Image

Apr
13

Captiva Cruises Boat To Cayo Costa

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cayo costa south west florida

Another Spring Break adventure! On Wednesday, Lori, Hayley, Culter and I went to the secluded island of Cayo Costa to relax and enjoy another gorgeous day on the islands.captiva cruises sign

I had problems getting out our own boat  (Clark was busy at work so he couldn’t help) so we decided to take the easy route and hop on the Captiva Cruises shelling boat Play Time for the afternoon trip.

play time captiva boat

Low and behold, guess who our captain was… my buddy Captain Brian Holaway! It was a nice surprise!

captain brian

After securing the boat on the south tip of Cayo Costa, Capt Brian walked over to our shelling spot to join us for a few minutes and immediately picked up an ALBINO YELLOW PRICKLY COCKLE. Wow, can he spot those albinos! Remember he won a red ribbon for his ALBINO WHELK at the Sanibel Shell Show this year? Amazing!

albino cockle

 I didn’t find an albino but I quickly found a handful of my own fave honeys.

angel wings baby ears

BABY’S EARS and FALSE ANGEL WINGS (they look like cute little juvie ANGEL WINGS)…

babys ears false angel wings

 Lots of beauteous JINGLES…

jingle seashells

A couple of CLOUDY PERIWINKLES…

cloudy periwinkle

cloudy periwikles

 I also found a PURPLISH SEMELE (left) and a CANCELLATE SEMELE (right). I’m not sure why I don’t find more of these on Sanibel but I have better luck finding them on Cayo Costa, North Captiva and in Marco. hmmmm

purplish and cancellate semele

I had thought at one time that this BRYOZOAN COLONY was a type of CORAL but as you can see side by side… it’s not a piece of CORAL like the branch on the right. I found both of these past the tree roots on the Gulf side of the beach. (click HERE for more info on Bryozoan Colony)

bryozoa coral difference

Okay, this one might not be your taste but I thought this SOUTHERN RIBBED MUSSEL was just so pretty for some reason. One day, when I get a fancy camera to show you the nice details up close and personal, I promise…I’ll be able to capture more of the beauty in some of these obscure seashells.

southern ribbd mussel

 After combing, sunning and shelling this gorgeous beach, Hayley, Cutler and Lori (VA) headed back to the boat with me after one more climb on the BLACK MANGROVE tree roots.

hayley cutler lori cayo costa

On the boat ride back, I couldn’t help but see how excited Margie, Kristi and Mike (California) were about their seashell loot!

margie kristi mike california

 They found oodles of ATLANTIC GIANT COCKLES…

shells cayo costa south florida

 Quite a few humongus SUNRAY VENUS CLAMS…

sunray venus cayo costa

 And a really big LEOPARD CRAB shell.

leopard crab cayo costa

 It was a perfect day on the water with calm aqua seas, warm temps in the 80s and DOLPHINS surrounding the boat.

dolphin captiva cruises boat

And to top if off, it was great being with good friends and having lots of seashell souvenirs to bring home to remember the day.

seashells cayo costa

 

Apr
07

Full Moon Beach Bling

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live sand dollars starfish

The weather conditions and last night’s full moon caused an extreme high tide that washed up lots of live creatures on the beach. Unfortunately for them, an extreme low tide left them with no where to hide.  Fortunately for Cory from Cape Coral (and me), he got to see a tiny live SAND DOLLAR with a few mature beauties as well as several live STARFISH at the Sanibel Lighthouse Beach then he put them back in the water.

cory sand dollar starfish

I saw several live TRUE TULIPS hiding inside a STIFF PEN SHELL.

pen shell true tulips inside

I did spot one empty bright orange TRUE TULIP hiding under one of those PEN SHELLS. A keeper! Yippee!

true tulip under pen shell

Along with a WORMIE and CHESTNUT TURBAN…

worm shell true tulip turban

Caroline and Jennifer (Atlanta) are long time “wentlers” so they knew just where to look to find dozens of WENTLETRAPS.

caroline jennifer atlanta

Jennifer found all of these WENTLETRAPS within an hour and a half…

wentletraps jennifer

Her daughter Caroline has the WENTLE-eye too …and the KING’S CROWN-eye and the BABY’S EAR-eye!

caroline shell bag

Guess who I met! …. Sanibelle! If you read a lot of my post comments, you might have read one of Sanibelle’s comments. She rocks! …well she “shells” …but you know what I mean. ;) It was a pleasure to me you, Sanibelle! This is miss cutie Sanibelle…

sanibelle louise

Since there were so many live creatures to ooooh and ahhhh at, it was hard to find many big empty shells besides PEN SHELLS. I talk about PEN SHELLS so often but I rarely ever show them so I found good example of both types that we find here. The one on the left is a STIFF PEN SHELL and the one on the right is a SAW-TOOTH PEN SHELL.

difference rough saw tooth pen shell

The most unusual shell I saw yesterday was a MANGROVE PERIWINKLE that Clark found yesterday on the gulf side of Lighthouse Beach. We just don’t find many of them at that beach.

mangrove periwinkle

He also found this little army man. I think he’ll make good company for my LEGO guy I found in February.

toy soldier on beach

Since there are so many live shells on the beaches right now, I just want to make sure you know that you can’t take any live shells, SAND DOLLARS, STARFISH and such. You should gently put it back where you found it or in deeper waters. Lots of people don’t know how to tell if a sand dollar is alive or not. Here’s the deal… if a SAND DOLLAR is any where near the water and is brownish and looks a little “furry”, that means it is happy and healthy so we need to let it live a long time …..so it can breed! This is what live SAND DOLLARS look like. See that “fur”? Those are his feet AND how he breathes. Cool, huh?

baby sand dollar

 This was the moon rise last night over Fort Myers Beach. I did not change or colorize this photo! It was really that big and colorful! I guess that’s why all the living creatures were stirring yesterday.

moon over ft myers beach

 There should be more goodies washing in so for now…. Gone Shelling.

 

 

Jun
05

Bobcat On North Captiva Beach

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Bobcat on North Captiva Beach

I was stunned as I watched a young, wild bobcat casually stroll along a stretch of beach on North Captiva Island. The scene was so surreal, I couldn’t take my eyes off this beautiful beast. My heart skipped a few beats so I fumbled with my camera. Click, click. Yes! I felt so fortunate to  have captured her in two photos.

Bobcat on Florida Beach

My good friend Diane and I took her boat out for an island hopping adventure with her trusty dog Callie this weekend. Within 10 minutes of anchoring off North Captiva, Diane saw this gorgeous cat and held well behaved Callie tightly on her leash. We have never had any bobcats attacks so we weren’t afraid she would turn on us but then again, a bobcat is a wild animal. We didn’t want to disturb her in any way to make her feel threatened or nervous so we stayed out of her way so she could go on her merry way to find a nice rat appetizer before her raccoon tartar lunch.

Cayo Coast photo

Still in awe over our sighting, we hopped on over to Cayo Costa to see what the south tip had in store for us. Live CLOUDY PERIWINKLES!

Periwinkles on tree

I mean llllllots of PERIWINKLES.

Perwinkle seashells

Here’s cutie Diane (check out our Cayo Costa Camping adventure last year) and her sweet dog Callie….

Di and Callie Cayo Costa

Look who we ran in to… or should I say “phooned” in to. Captain Brian! So we (including Callie) had to phoon with Di’s boat.

phooning on Cayo Costa

We may not have found a boat load of shells but we sure had a “wild”, adventurous girls day on the calm gulf waters. Thanks Di!!

simply beautiful

PS- You can only get to North Captiva and Cayo Costa by boat. I thought I’d add a map to show you where these islands are in relation to Sanibel. North Cap is marked by the purple circle in the top left corner and Cayo Costa is one island north of North Cap.

North Captiva Map

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