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…
This will give you an idea of how “big” those little gems are by looking at my handful of sweet somethings…
As much fun as it was collecting minis, I was tickled pink when Clark showed me his fave find… A ROSEATE SPOONBILL FEATHER.
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.
Here are four immature WHITE IBISES hanging out with a SNOWY EGRET and a BLUE HERON.
It was a bird lovers paradise last night. I even saw the dance of the REDDISH EGRET…
Before it got dark, we stopped at Sanibel Lighthouse Beach just in time to catch a beautiful RAINBOW…
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…
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.
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)
8. Ummm. Why did I put that in there? I have no idea what it is. LOL Best guess?
10. Pitted Murex
12. Oh geez- I’m just going with baby whelk so cute!
16. Fish Vertebra
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!
There are so many different COCKLE SHELLS that live here in SouthWest Florida! Clark even found this wonderful ALBINO FLORIDA PRICKLY COCKLE this weekend…
I’m sure that it’s an ALBINO since the shell looks so fresh with the ribs perfectly in tact without that dull matte finish that you get with beach worn shells.
Since I received a comment from Pat Bradley on a post last week who suggested that I add the PAINTED COCKLE on my Seashell Identification page (Thank you Pat for the great suggestion!) I couldnt stop thinking about how many different COCKLES there are. So when Clark found the ALBINO COCKLE I remembered I needed to photograph the PAINTED EGG COCKLE…
Then I realized I didn’t have the very common FLORIDA PRICKLY COCKLE on my Shell Identification page either… Geez, so many COCKLES. I’m getting frazzled!
So I might as well show the whole gaggle of COCKLES we have in our collection of shells. This includes of course the ATLANTIC GIANT COCKLE…
And probably my favorite… the YELLOW PRICKLY COCKLE.
Well wait, I take that back. I think the BROAD PAPER COCKLE is my favorite COCKLE but I just don’t find them often. Take a close look… have you found lots of these?
We can’t forget about the tiny MORTON’S EGG COCKLE either! They are so stinkin cute!
And finally, we have the VELVET EGG COCKLE (which I normally just call it a plain ol EGG COCKLE)
There is a STRAWBERRY COCKLE as well, but I didn’t find one this weekend when I looked for COCKLES and I can’t remember ever picking one up. So when we find one, (and we will definitely be keeping our eyes peeled!) I’ll let you know.
But before I sign off for tonight, I met a really nice local gal Mary Beth from Fort Myers on the beach by the Sanibel fishing pier. (yes, the water is that ice tea color again… too much rain so overflow of the lake and river – ugh. It will clear up soon)
While I was looking for COCKLES, she was on the hunt for minis. She showed me this sweet little MARGINELLA along with some other excellent specimens.
This is no yoke….. errr… I mean joke! The inside of this MORTON’S YELLOW EGG COCKLE is really this yellow! And some of the exterior patterns are just as pretty.
We found quite a few of these on some of the sandy mud flats at Cayo Costa.
There is such a variety of patterns on the interiors and exteriors of these cutie little shells.
Yep, I said “little” shells. Wanna see how little they are?
I would have completely missed these little guys if it hadn’t been for MurexAlice pointing these beauties out to me. I felt so lucky to be able to beach comb with her since she showed me another cutie little shell I would have missed. This is the FLORIDA LYONSIA…
It is so delicate and paper thin I thought I would break the valves apart before I got home to photograph it. But… Yes! It made it home with both valves still attached. I rinsed the shells off but those little grains of sand seem to be attached so I let them be.
I’m not sure if you can see the iridescent shimmer to it, but it reminds me of a tiny little ANGEL WING with a pearlized finish.
Okay, let me back up a bit before I forget to show you this….I mentioned the MORTON’S YELLOW EGG COCKLE in previous post “I’m Telling On Some Tellins” and it reminded me of an orchid plant. I got a comment from Jackie saying that it was the Oncidium orchid that it looks like. Yes, that’s it! I found a photo from Wikipedia that will show you why it these shells remind me of an orchid. Do you see why now?
White Crested Tellin
The island seashell telegraph was buzzing yesterday with the news that a rare WHITE CRESTED TELLIN was found by our shelling friend Nancy (see her on post Seashell In My Pocket) while she was shelling the out islands with her husband Dayton and their best friends Gary and Sandy. Look at the cool serrated edges on this shell- those aren’t chips. This photo only shows the one side of the shell…the other side is attached as well! They took it to the shop Sanibel Seashell Industries and he said it was a rare find.
Rose Petal Tellins
Gary found all of these ROSE PETAL TELLINS out on the out islands too. They got out there by hiring shelling guide Brian Holaway to take them out near North Captiva and Cayo Costa.
Yellow Alternate Tellin
I think it’s the prettiest yellow ALTERNATE TELLIN I’ve ever seen. Guess who found this. Nancy! She was a hawk eye out on those flats. This shell looks similar to a COQUINA in this picture but it’s about an inch bigger.
These are the color that these TELLINS normally are. Nice… but can’t really compare to that yellow!
Nancy's Scotch Bonnet
Brian surely did not disappoint this crowd. Nancy found this SCOTCH BONNET too!! This was her first time she has found a SCOTCH BONNET and she said Brian seemed just as excited as she was.
Morton's Egg Cockle
They all found MORTON’S EGG COCKLES which are another shell crafter favorite since the inside is such a bright yellow. I forget the variety, but to me, they look like orchid petals. Please help me if you know what orchid I’m thinking of.
The shelling continued with PURPLISH TAGELUS shells.
Sandy found this super big WENTLETRAP and lots of BABY’S EARS. You wouldn’t believe the bags and bags of goodies the whole gang brought back.
Bags of shells
They all could not get over how much fun they had and how many shells they found with Brian as their guide ( click HERE for info on Brian). Congrats to you all and thanks for sharing your goodies.
Gary, Sandy, Nancy and Dayton (MN) from October