For 5 days now, the shelling in SouthWest Florida as been has been outrageous! It doesn’t get more outrageous that finding your very first JUNONIA after 20 years of searching… then 2 days later, finding JUNONIA #2! Jill from Miami was livin’ the good life this weekend finding those trophies plus two ALPHABET CONES to boot. Shellzam! Congratshellations, Jill- so happy for you!
But wait.. the outrageousness continued! Wouldn’t you love to find a huge empty HORSE CONCH like this with a bright orange interior?
Gail and Alicia not only found that one gorgeous shell, they found 3 more! … Plus a nice size LIGHTNING WHELK too. Over the long weekend, they were out every morning before sunrise and said there were hundreds of live HORSE CONCHS rolling in the surf on the beach near Island Inn but kept on looking to find ones that were empty.
So I’m sure you can image how happy they were to find those amazing large shells already…. then to find a SEAHORSE too? They found this guy in the afternoon just getting back out on the beach in the high tide wrack line. REally, after all of those trophy shells then a SEAHORSE….Outrageous! Congrats Gail and Alicia!
I found quite a variety on Island Inn beach as well but nothing compared to what they found of course…
I met Lea and her daughter Kristi from Omaha picking up the dried MILLIPEDE STARFISH in the high tide wrack line.
They asked me how to preserve these awesome SEASTARS so they can put them in shadowboxes when they get home. Honestly, I have never had luck with keeping them in tact because I guess I keep them outside or in my garage too long and the humidity gets to them so they break apart and start stinking -Ack! I’m doing something wrong so I never pick them up anymore- I don’t care how bone dry and perfect they are. But… My friend Moira makes beautiful shadowboxes with them as well as Kim who both live in Chicago- they have no problems so I hope they see this so they can explain in a comment how they get them home without breaking them and keeping them intact for a frame.
Fort Myers Beach was rocking with shells too! My friend Debbie’s dad Dennis from Kansas was in town for the holiday and they found lots of treasures…
Repeat… they found LOTS of treasures… LOL
Throughout the holiday weekend, I saw lots of shells at Lighthouse Beach, South Seas, Blind Pass, Island Inn, …. and my last stop for the weekend shelling was Gulfside City Park this morning for low tide. I found such a variety of shells again including a perfect ALPHABET CONE along with the best SHARK’S EYE I’ve found in a while. But my real favorites where violet colored FIGHTING CONCHS which I don’t think I’ve ever found colors in FIGHTING CONCHS like these before. Weird, because I even found another purple one at Island Inn beach the other day. So unusual.
This morning Karen from Orlando area was happy with her finds too…
She found a perfect ANGEL WING and a few SAND DOLLARS…
And these are just a few that were in her bag. Awesome.
There where so many live creatures as well. It’s always fascinating to see these beautiful living animals in their natural habitat like this beautiful live LIGHTNING WHELK. Since this shell was occupied, I dug a hole for him to wait it out until the higher tide came back in so he could scoot along wherever it wished.
One more thing…. I have a new online Art Gallery!
Over the years, I have shared many, many photos of my shelling adventures and have learned that… just as I love to collect a beautiful shell, I love to capture a beautiful moment or my beautiful surrounds with my lens just as much. I never could find the means to offer them as quality, affordable art on canvas, prints, cards and more…. until now! So I started an online Art Gallery for my photographs. It’s just the beginning so I haven’t added all of the photos that you’ve asked for in the past but at least this is a start. I’m heartfelt that you’ve asked for them and I’m proud that now I can offer them. Please stop by, take a browse, say “hi” and if you like one enough to buy it, I would be incredibly honored.
Don’t forget! We have an iLoveShelling Cruise to Cayo Costa on Friday December 6, 2013 at 9am. We can do some fun shelling together… so Join Us! CLICK HERE
I found a SEA HORSE! It was laying in the sand near some washed up sea grasses at Gulfside City Park. Yep, just laying in the sand and I screamed when I saw it. haha
I wanted to show my friend Diane where those little tiny SAND DOLLARS (sand “dimes”) were that I found the other day on my post Uber Cute Sand Dollars To Dimes . Unfortunately, we didn’t find the SAND DOLLARS but I did get to see Diane’s friends Cathie and Mary from St Louis, Wendy from The Keys and cutie Callie on the leash.
Since we didn’t find the minis, we started looking through all of the BEACH BLING. Wendy found a CRUCIFIX SHELL! She’s an experienced sheller so she knew immediately what it was when she saw it.
We were also finding MERMAID’S PURSES (SKATE EGG CASES). Sckeppy told me the other day “I’ve heard of skate egg cases being called “sailor’s purses”, with the observation that they are usually empty!”.
We found so many other EGG CASES as well! From left to right… a PEAR WHELK, LIGHTNING WHELK, PAPER FIG, BANDED TULIP and TRUE TULIP. We coudn’t find a TRUE TULIP to put under the egg case but we found half a BANDED TULIP to put underneath the EGG CASE (that grew around some sort of stick).
So when you see all sorts of BEACH BLING lining the beach, always look for special treasures like this SEA HORSE !
There’s always something to new to see and always new awesome friends to meet…
Combing through the BLING. On a SEAHORSE beach grass sleigh, Over the beaches she goes, Laughing all the way! Ho Ho Ho
Merry Christmas, Mimi! Mimi from Memphis found this beautiful SEAHORSE tangled up in the BEACH BLING grasses by Gulfside City Park.
It was like Santa buckled that SEAHORSE up in a open Beach Grass sleigh then sent it on its way for Mimi to find her gift from the sea. There had to be hundreds of other beach combers that walked passed those bundles of BLING but it took Mimi’s patience and keen eye to pick through those weeds to find her beach treasure. I think Santa knew that she would be that special sheller to find it.
Congratshellations Mimi! I am so happy I was there to witness your merry rare find and spend a glorious morning on the beach with you and Al!
I found a SEAHORSE on Bowman’s Beach!
I have only found one other SEAHORSE in all the years I have been shelling so this is a real treasure for me. After I washed some of the sand off of him, I could see that his back fin had been broken off so that’s why the little guy didn’t make it. Poor little sweetie.
SEAHORSES anchor themselves by their tail on sea grasses so maybe this guy couldn’t help but get pushed around with the tide on one of the pieces of SARGASSUM after his fin got damaged. Last night the beach was littered with SARGASSUM which looks like a SEAWEED with little berries on it. This is NOT the same as the HYDROID that I talked about on my last post. This will not sting you thank goodness.
I was a little disappointed that there weren’t more shell piles instead of all this BEACH BLING but I just kept looking around the SARGASSUM and oodles of RED MANGROVE SEED PODS sprinkled along the beach.
That’s when I saw it!
I even got video of my find! Now you will see how much BEACH BLING I had to “weed” through to find this awesome treasure. Enjoy!
PS- That first photo looks like the SEAHORSE painting I did to make my Sea Life notecards.
Live Seahorse photo by Carol Saunders
Beachcomber Carol found and rescued a live SEAHORSE! I introduced Carol on my November 7 post Shellicious Shelling because she showed me the SERPENT STARFISH and then we saw the LONG-SPINED URCHIN together. She’s also the one that gave me the packaged west coast SAND DOLLAR.
Seahorse on Sanibel photo by Carol Saunders
A couple days after we shelled the beach together, I got this note from Carol-
“I wanted to tell you about my adventure the very next day on the beach where we met. Things were slowed way down Monday in the shell dept on that same beach. When I crossed the sand bar, however, things picked up. I noticed some strange markings in the sand and then the creature that had made them: a seahorse!!”
She picked “him” up and took this sweet guy to the safety of water where she witnessed his recovery. What a rescue! Carol said she snapped photos (above) as soon as she saw the SEAHORSE and then realized he was alive.
Tarpon Bay Explorers Sea Horses
SEAHORSES are fascinating fish! Here’s a couple of Fun Facts….. Did you know that the males carry the reproductive eggs then “births” them? Did you know that some species mate for life? To see live SEAHORSES you can visit Tarpon Bay Explorers on Sanibel.
Tarpon Bay Explorers
On this Thanksgiving holiday, I am thankful for so many things. I am especially thankful for my family, friends, being able to meet people like Carol and to be surrounded by so many beautiful gifts of the sea. Happy Thanksgiving to you as well!