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

Spectacle Of Spectral Bittersweets

Posted by on Jun 11, 2015 in Bittersweet Clam, Comb Bittersweet, Day Trips From Sanibel Island Florida & More, Giant Bittersweet, Jupiter Island Florida shells, Sea turtle, Spectral Bittersweet Clam Shell | 11 comments

Spectral Bittersweet Glycymeris spectralis

My mind is blown by how many spectacsheller SPECTRAL BITTERSWEETS cover the beach on Jupiter Island, Florida.

seashells on Jupiter Beach Florida

This is a “Throw Back Thursday” since I never posted this trip my good friend Diane and I took from Sanibel over to the east coast of Florida in January to visit some other girlfriends- Girls Getaway! We couldn’t stay for very long so we packed in everything we could… including an hour on the beach for shelling. Of course.

Pam and Diane with seashells in Jupiter Florida shelling

We hit the mother load of SPECTRAL BITTERSWEETS at Blowing Rocks Preserve which has beautiful rock formations exposed from ocean currents depositing drifting sea shells and sand to form an underwater bar of COQUINA LIMESTONE about 125,000 years ago. This is the largest rock formation of the Anastasia Formation from St Augustine to southern Palm Beach County.

Spectral bittersweet shells Blowing Rock Jupiter Florida

We mostly found the SPECTRAL BITTERSWEETS around the rocks but I did find a big ol’ LIONS PAW frag too (which I kept- heehee).

lions paw shell fragment

Along with the gorgeous view, the excellent company and a beautiful day, I found so many treasures on the beach to remember this quick girls getaway trip forever.

Sea shells found Jupiter Florida beach at Blowing Rock Hole

PS- Just so you can see the difference between the SPECTRAL BITTERSWEET (left- we’ve only found 2 on Sanibel that I can recall), the COMB BITTERSWEET (we find lots of them on Cayo Costa and Big Hickory) and the GIANT BITTERSWEET (on the right and one of my faves in SW Florida)… here’s the 3 BITTERSWEETS lined up together.

Difference in spectral, comb, giant bittersweet mollusk shell

Join us for an iLoveShelling Shelling Adventure! For more info CLICK HERE

pam rambo shelling trips


PS- And we visited a SEA TURTLE rehabilitation center too- so cool…

sea turtle rehab jupiter florida

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Shellectric Seashells

Posted by on Mar 2, 2015 in Bittersweet Clam, Cabrit's Murex, Flat Zigzag Scallop, Freak Shells, Giant Bittersweet, Murex, Rough scallop, Scallop, Seashells | 25 comments

seashells found on Captiva Island Florida

It doesn’t get any better than seeing a huge pile of shells wash up on the beach within one day. I was shellucky enough to see it happen at Blind Pass Captiva and to get the video of it I showed you on my last post. It was Shellectric!

shells pile up southwest florida

Talk about “shellucky” – local sheller Susan from Pine Island found a CABRITS MUREX!

Susan from Pine Island FL shells Captiva


Captiva Cabrits Murex

These are just a few other fab shells she found as well…

Shells found on Captiva Island in February

Lolly was there with her homemade shell belt collecting all sorts of goodies.

Lolly with shells and shelling belt

She found all sorts of shells like HORSE CONCHS, WHELKS, MUREXES and FLAT ZIG ZAGS and GIANT BITTERSWEETS…

flat zig zag scallop found on Captiva

Large giant bittersweet shell

After seeing my “CANDY” (my little HORSIES in the first photo) and Lolly’s as well, an orange HORSE CONCH is all Patti from MN was wishing to find. Moments later… voila! Patti whooped it up when she found her own sweet “CANDY”. Yay!

Patti from MN visits Captiva shells

Babs from St Augustine was there to see all the shellnanagans and to find her own treasures.

Babs St Augustine visits Captiva shells

Its always fun to see what makes different people happy when they find something unusual. I was thrilled when Babs showed me this awesome ROUGH SCALLOP that had obviously been damaged in its lifetime but survived the predatory incident (IMHO- I’m thinking that’s prob what happened).

freak rough scallop shell repaired from damage

See? At one time, this mollusk knew it had more life to live and repaired its damage to see more days. I love those type shells! This even looks like it tried to manage the shape of a heart.

freak predatory attack mollusk survival

This shell pile event doesn’t happen every day so when I’m there to witness it, I try to breathe it all in and enjoy every single moment.

orange rough scallop shell on the beach

I didn’t make it back yesterday so I have no idea if it’s all still there. Let me know if you found any treasures at Blind Pass over the weekend.

beautiful seashells on shells

Join me on a Shelling Adventure! CLICK HERE for more info.

pam rambo shelling trips

PS- I was at Gulfside City Park Beach over the weekend and its still loaded with shells and bling too. :)

Oh and I hope to see y’all at the 2015 78th Annual Sanibel Shell Festival at the Sanibel Community House this weekend March 5,6, and 7!2015 78th Sanibel Shell Festival

UPDATE 3-3-15: I stopped by Blind Pass Captiva …. the shell pile is completely picked over and filled with sand. Amazing. The top picture had new shells in this post washing in and the lower picture was 3 days later.  The power of Mother Nature…

Blind Pass beach difference in 3 days


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Utopia Beach on Cayo Costa Island

Posted by on Mar 5, 2014 in Captiva, Captiva Cruises, Cayo Costa, Comb Bittersweet, False Angel Wing, Speckled Tellin, White Crested Tellin | 20 comments

shelling cayo costa florida

If Utopia is an island of clear aqua blue water with strings of seashells lining the shore, then we found Utopia on Cayo Costa Island during our iLoveShelling cruise on Captiva Cruises this week.

santiva cruise boat from captiva to cayo costa

My day started out with such joy and fun meeting Shelling Sistahs Cheryl (Venice) and Alice (Ohio via Venice, FL). Love them!

cheryl fl alice ohio visit captiva cruises pam rambo

Our morning had a slight chill in the air around 62 degrees then quickly warmed to 80 in no time at all by the time we got to the island to start our search for shells.

clear blue water cayo costa shelling

Cheryl found the first BABY’S EAR! It’s sort of hidden by the JINGLES on the right but she is a JINGLE SHELL lover like I am so she started picking up as many JINGLES as she could.

black jingles babys ear shells

You might recognize Shelling Sistah Katherine Haskins since I met her last year at Lighthouse Beach and so much enjoy her comments here on the blog.

kathryn with seashells cayo costa

She found a gorgeous SPECKLED TELLIN and either a very big BUTTERCUP LUCINE or a very yellow CHALKY BUTTERCUP LUCINE (I should have inspected the hinge more closely o see if it was the def CHALKY but either way its a very beautiful BUTTERCUP), and lots of other sweet bivalves.

bivalve seashells found on a florida beach

We also had the HOTS join our cruise! Yes, they are HOT chicks but they call themselves the HOTS because they say they move slow as a Heard Of Turtles. LOL Nannie, J.E., Becky and Ginny from Georgia have a great time every where they go. Thank y’all so much for joining us and making me laugh!

hots nannie J.E. becky ginny GA

Karen had no problem walking as far as she could as she looked at this gorgeous calm aqua water to find a hand full of SAND DOLLARS and OLIVES.

sand dollars karen sand dollars

Karen couldnt wait to sort through the loot they found when she and her husband Scott got back on the boat.

karen scott iLS captiva cruise

sea shells found on cayo costa island florida

I was very impressed with the treasures Jan from Chicago was going for.

jan chigago shelling southwest florida cayo costa

She loves the bivalves or any shells she hasn’t found before so she was thrilled to have found a WHITE CRESTED TELLIN along with CANCELLATE SEMELES, a PURPLE SEMELE, COMB BITTERSWEETS, an ALTERNATE TELLIN and a STRIATE PIDDOCK. The orange ROUGH SCALLOP wasn’t a new find for her but it was one of her fave finds, she had to have it in her hand. Love that! Y’all know how excited I get to find a new shell, so its always fun to experience someone else who gets excited about finding new shells…. even if it isn’t a JUNONIA. heeehee

wedge piddock cancellate semele comb bittersweet tellin

As soon as she showed me her WHITE CRESTED TELLIN, I looked down to find one too. Its funny how that happens, right? If we are reminded to look for a shell and get that color and pattern in your brain, it’s a tad easier to find one. Okay brain… remember – white shell with brown spots.

lunate crassinella white crested tellin

Every month when we have this iLS cruise, it’s such a pleasure to meet cool shellers like Lee and Renie from Houston…

lee renie houston on cruise to cayo costa

And it’s especially great to see shellers again from previous years like Louie and Dee from Illinois.

dee louie illinios on cruise to cayo costa

Nancy from Indiana found a baby bear SUNRAY VENUS, mamma bear SUNRAY VENUS and papa bear SUNRAY VENUS…

sunday venus family with auger

Linda was thrilled to find her first POINTED VENUS (on the right), FALSE ANGEL WINGS and COMB BITTERSWEETS.

comb bittersweets false angel wings pointed venus shells

YAY! I was so excited that Annette and Jim from Shellabaloo 3 joined us as well! It is so much fun to catch up with them after we spent so much time together on our Shelling Adventure last year.

annette jim shellabaloo revisit cayo costa

It was a gorgeous day on the water with a boat full of awesome shellers! Thank you all for making this an absolutely fabulous day!

iLoveShelling captiva cruise to cayo costa

Join us on our next iLoveShelling cruise April 2! For more details CLICK HERE

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The 12 Shells Of Sanibel My Seashore Gave To Me…

Posted by on Dec 18, 2013 in Alphabet Cone, Apple, Atlantic Giant, Banded tulip, Beach Holiday, Bittersweet Clam, buttercup, Calico, Christmas, Cockle, Conch, Cone, Fighting Conch, Giant Bittersweet, Lettered Olive, Lightning Whelk, Murex, Olive, Sailor's Ear Channeled Duck Clam, Scallop, Tulip, Whelk | 59 comments

12 cockles clicking

Of my first find of shelling, my seashore gave to me…. a CONE on the beach of Sanibel

1 cone from sanibel

Of my second find of shelling, my seashore gave to me… 2 BITTERSWEETS and a CONE on the beach of Sanibel.

2 bittersweets

Of my third find of shelling, my seashore gave to me… 3 NUTMEGS, 2 BITTERSWEETS and a CONE on the beach of Sanibel.

3 nutmegs

Of my fourth find of shelling, my seashore gave to me… 4 sunbeam SCALLOPS, 3 NUTMEGS, 2 BITTERSWEETS and a CONE on the beach of Sanibel.

4 sunbeam scallops

Of my fifth find of shelling, my seashore gave to me… 5 golllldennnnn BUTTERCUPS, 4 sunbeam SCALLOPS, 3 NUTMEGS, 2 BITTERSWEETS and a CONE on the beach of Sanibel.

5 golden buttercups

On the sixth day of shelling, my seashore gave to me… 6 marvelous MUREXES, 5 golllldennnnn BUTTERCUPS, 4 sunbeam SCALLOPS, 3 NUTMEGS, 2 BITTERSWEETS and a CONE on the beach of Sanibel.

6 marvelous murexes

Of my seventh find of shelling, my seashore gave to me… 7 SAILORS EARS singing, 6 marvelous MUREXES, 5 golllldennnnn BUTTERCUPS, 4 sunbeam SCALLOPS, 3 NUTMEGS, 2 BITTERSWEETS and a CONE on the beach of Sanibel.

7 sailors ears singing

Of my eighth find of shelling, my seashore gave to me… 8 awesome OLIVES, 7 SAILORS EARS singing, 6 marvelous MUREXES, 5 golllldennnnn BUTTERCUPS, 4 sunbeam SCALLOPS, 3 NUTMEGS, 2 BITTERSWEETS and a CONE on the beach of Sanibel.

8 awesome olives

Of my ninth find of shelling, my seashore gave to me… 9 WHELKS a welcoming, 8 awesome OLIVES, 7 SAILORS EARS singing, 6 marvelous MUREXES, 5 golllldennnnn BUTTERCUPS, 4 sunbeam SCALLOPS, 3 NUTMEGS, 2 BITTERSWEETS and a CONE on the beach of Sanibel.

9 whelks a welcoming

Of my tenth find of shelling, my seashore gave to me… 10 TULIPS twirling, 9 WHELKS a welcoming, 8 awesome OLIVES, 7 SAILORS EARS singing, 6 marvelous MUREXES, 5 golllldennnnn BUTTERCUPS, 4 sunbeam SCALLOPS, 3 NUTMEGS, 2 BITTERSWEETS and a CONE on the beach of Sanibel.

10 tulips twirling

Of my eleventh find of shelling, my seashore gave to me… 11 CONCHS  a clacking, 10 TULIPS twirling, 9 WHELKS a welcoming, 8 awesome OLIVES, 7 SAILORS EARS singing, 6 marvelous MUREXES, 5 golllldennnnn BUTTERCUPS, 4 sunbeam SCALLOPS, 3 NUTMEGS, 2 BITTERSWEETS and a CONE on the beach of Sanibel.

11 conchs a clacking

Of my twelfth find of shelling, my seashore gave to me… 12 COCKLES clicking, 11 CONCHS  a clacking, 10 TULIPS twirling, 9 WHELKS a welcoming, 8 awesome OLIVES, 7 SAILORS EARS singing, 6 marvelous MUREXES, 5 golllldennnnn BUTTERCUPS, 4 sunbeam SCALLOPS, 3 NUTMEGS, 2 BITTERSWEETS and a CONE on the beach of Sanibel.

12 cockles clicking


Happy Shellidays, y’all!


shelling adventures trips by pam

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String Of Shells On Captiva

Posted by on Nov 15, 2013 in Bittersweet Clam, Carrier Shell, Coral, Florida Cone, Frond Oyster, Giant Bittersweet, Scotch Bonnet | 18 comments

collection of captiva shells and coral

As I walked onto the sand of Blind Pass Captiva towards the Gulf Of Mexico yesterday, I didn’t see much of a shell pile forming on the beach. But I did see Rena (Fort Myers) in the water about knee deep with her shelling backhoe filling up her bag. It was so much fun to see such much beautiful CORAL in her bag then she showed me her two FLORIDA CONES, GIANT BITTERSWEET and that sweet little orange candy.

rena with shells from the gulf of mexico

There was one small string of shells that had come in at the high tide, that most of the shellers were picking through to find a treasure or two. Since this was on Captiva, you could say they were doing the Captiva Crouch instead of The Sanibel Stoop…. Oh yes… that would be a crouch!

captiva shelling

After lots of people had already picked through this wrack line, Jay still found an amazing treasure. A perfect SCOTCH BONNET! Shellzam!

scotch bonnet found on south captiva beach

Brenda and Jay from St Louis were already happy with all of the other shells that they had found so the SCOTCH BONNET was just icing on the cake.

jay brenda st louis visit sanibel finding seashells

He was so surprised that it was in perfect condition with such great color just sitting in that shell line. You just never know!

scotch bonnet found on captiva beach

Jamie from Ft Lauderdale was doing double time. After he threw out a fishing rod to catch a few fish, he couldn’t help but catch a few shells as well.

jamie ft lauderdale seashells

Beautiful OLIVES and CONCHS but I couldn’t take my eye off that gorgeous ROUGH SCALLOP right below the bucket.

jamie seashells collection

Around 11am I felt so lucky to find a CARRIER SHELL! This is how I saw it….

carrier shell in the sand

I had to leave the beach around noon but came back to Blind Pass Captiva around 3:30pm just to see what the low tide had exposed. The beach hadn’t changed that much (actually, it looked pretty picked over by then) and didn’t see lots of shells in the water like the high tide had shown… BUT …. I saw another CARRIER SHELL! I may have missed it earlier since I don’t think the tide had brought in more shells after I left but this is exactly what it looked like sitting with the other shell. Click on this next photo. Would you have noticed it?

carrier shell in shell pile captiva florida

 This is what it looks like from the side view. See how it collects other shell fragments and CORAL to cement them to its shell?

american carrier shell captiva florida

Here is another view of the one I found in the morning. I love that this shell is a shell collector too like us!

carrier shell with seashell fragments

I love to find unusual shells so I was thrilled with my treasures. Other than the CARRIER SHELLS, I didn’t find many whole UNIVALVES like WHELKS or TULIPS in that line of shells but I did find a piece of a LIONS PAW and a piece of JUNONIA and some awesome CALICO SCALLOPS  and CORAL.

carrier shells lions paw junonia piece

The other shell above the piece of CORAL in my last photo is a FROND OYSTER. I wouldn’t say it was a rare shell, but I don’t find many of them in good condition like this one. I know, it’s not so pretty (like the CARRIER SHELL) but I gotta tell ya, these things make me so happy when I find them. It’s all about the little things in life.

frond oyster shell captiva florida

Have a great weekend!

shelling adventures trips by pam

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Happiness is… Seashells, Sunshine and Rainbows

Posted by on Aug 12, 2013 in Alphabet Cone, Banded tulip, Bittersweet Clam, Blind Pass, Coral, Florida Cone, Giant Bittersweet, Olive, Rainbows | 28 comments

seashells color beach blanket captiva

Seashells + Sunshine + Rainbows = Happiness.  It’s the perfect equation to make for a great weekend. Seeing those beautiful shells on a rainbow beach towel sums it up and makes me smile from ear to ear after being out in the sunshine. Karen and Mike from Fort myers found a FLORIDA CONE, TINTED CANTHARUS, OLIVES, AUGERS, CONCHS, WORMIE, CORAL and lots of other goodies to total an exshellent shelling day at Blind Pass Captiva.

blue beach blanket seashells

Donna from Clermont, FL looked as beautiful as her shells (on the water blue beach blanket) while she was being shaded by her darling beach hat and umbrella. She was thrilled to find 2 BANDED TULIPS!

donna clermont fl visit captiva seashells

You know I love to peek in shell buckets! Oooooo. I spy an ALPHABET CONE!

seashells inside blue shell bucket captiva

Laura from Ft Lauderdale is the proud sheller filling up that shell bucket.

laura with shells captiva turner beach

Wow! These are some of her faves … the perfect ALPHABET CONE, BITTERSWEET, TULIP, NUTMEG and a cool piece of CORAL. Happiness.

laura ft lauderdale visit sanibel seashells

I started out the weekend at the Lighthouse Beach where I met Gary from Illinois with his shelling backhoe. He wasn’t having much luck finding keeper shells that evening but he said he didn’t mind since he had already collected great shells all throughout the week. He knows the beach changes every day so you have to take advantage of what you find each day… and that evening was a double rainbow! You can still see the faint rainbow on the horizon behind him.

gary shelling backhoe sanibel

Bella and Mackenzie had to stop and take in the beautiful site before it faded away. Sweet!

mackenzie bella watch rainbow sanibel

I posted this same rainbow with the CONCH SHELL on Saturday because I couldn’t wait to show you. They never last long so it’s always so exciting to see them, much less snap a photo in time to catch it. As I was snapping photos of the shells under the rainbow (CLICK HERE to see it), twins Brady and Katie were strolling by collecting shells when Brady reached down and grabbed “my” FIGHTING CONCH. His mom saw that it was the shell I was photographing, so she told him to put it back down. I said “No, no, no…. it’s ok! I’m not going to keep it any way”. LOL By that time, the rainbow was in full color so while Brady and Katie still had the shell, I snapped another photo of them. OMG it this adorable or what? You can’t make this stuff up!

brady katie tampa visit sanibel rainbow

It’s happiness.

gull and Sanibel rainbow

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