The waters surrounding Cayo Costa yesterday on our iLoveShelling Adventure with Captiva Cruises were so calm and crystal clear, we could see all sorts of amazing live creatures like this TWO-SPINED SEA STAR…
… And live LETTERED OLIVES…
As well as huge live HORSE CONCHS with several colonies of different hitch hikers making their home.
It was shellsational!
Sylvia from PA was thrilled to find quite a few empty FALSE ANGEL WINGS.
It was an ANGEL WING kind of day! They may not look like much here in this next photo, but trust me… they are very special finds when they have just come out of the water still little dingy and packed with mud with both halves still together. These were only just a few of all the ones we found. It was so cool!
Sally, Kathy, Lynda and Mary from MI were some of the lucky ones to have gotten handfuls of them.
Lynda also found some other favorites too.
Carrie and Valerie (KY) couldn’t help but stay in the water to hunt for treasures.
They were both finding ANGEL WINGS plus some other awesome shells.
Rock hounds from Michigan- Nicole, Joe and Steve were happy to hunt for gems in the warm clear water. It was so much fun hearing about their PETOSKY STONE treasure hunts compared to hunting for shells. Thanks for the lesson!
They found a variety of goodies but I especially loved Nicole’s JUVENILE SOUTHERN QUAHOG with the zig zag pattern (bottom left). When the Southern Quahogs get older, they lose that great pattern so its always fun to see it at this stage.
Kathy from NC was a-dorable all dressed in her aqua and shelling sister tee. So much fun to meet you!
And talk about a-dorable… real true shelling sisters Cindy (Ohio), Teresa MD and Margie (Ohio) are only 3 of 7 sisters… with 7 brothers. They are the sweetest happiest gals and it was a pleasure to meet y’all!
Local sheller Deena found a bucket full of double SUNRAY VENUS shells. Thank you for coming with us Deena- just know Im thinking about you this week.
Vanessa, Ana, Marta and Alice came to SW Florida all the way from California to find shells… and they were ready! Ana, it was so much fun to compare notes with you on some of the shells and beach adventures.
Shelley, Kianna and David (MI) were very lucky that the water was so calm and clear to have spotted a huge perfect ANGEL WING and to get it back to the CAPTIVA CRUISES dock safe and sound.
It’s always fun to meet families that shell together like Eddie, Bill, Donna, Isabella, Steve and Michele from Delaware. They all have great shelling eyes that they must have gotten from Donna.
They had asked me where they could find WENTLETRAPS on Cayo Costa and I told them they were there but we don’t find the very often on that island. Low and behold Donna found a WENTLETRAP and her granddaughter Isabella found one too. Isabella inherited her gramdmoms shelling eye! Congratshellations!
Join me for a Shelling Adventure CLICK HERE !
After several weeks of east winds, the west winds have finally arrived to drive some shells on to our beaches. Today was only the first day of the westies but since it was a really low tide this morning, I figured I’d find some goodies. It’s always a good day when you find an ALPHABET CONE and you’ve got to see just how darn cute this little juvie HORSE CONCH is…
I couldn’t believe I found this ANGEL WING sitting in the high wrack line…
I love when I find shells like this BANDED TULIP lying on the beach like this.
Tonya, Beth and Max from Ohio had their bags filled with all sorts of treasures.
Wanna look in their shell bags? I sure wanted to too! COCKLES and CONCHS and CLAMS…
Max found this live LIGHTNING WHELK in the high tide wrack line so he walked it down to the water and gently put it in the water. Good for you Max! You helped save this beauty.
I found local Sanibel sheller Lynn walking her very happy standard poodle Alexander with a pocket full of seashell treasure too.
Look at those pretty those COLORFUL MOON shells along with those candies and a mini TURE TULIP.
There was all sorts of bivalves scattered along the beach. I found this ATLANTIC COCKLE, PONDEROUS ARK and SOUTHERN QUAHOG together on the beach just like this…
This is the biggest DARK CERITH I’ve ever found. It’s one and a half inches long!
I was pretty pleased with what we all were finding on the beach near Donax Street today after the first day of west winds. Tomorrow might be even better!
After scattered rain showers throughout the day yesterday, the evening was clear enough to enjoy a beautiful walk on the beach to find some live shells….
…And LOTS of empty shells!
We were collecting shells last night to add to our buckets of shells to throw from out “float” to the crowd for the Sanibel 4th of July Parade Shellebration tomorrow!
Pat from South Carolina found a really big SHARK’S EYE MOON SNAIL.
Along with catching some nice seashells, we even caught a glimpse of a rainbow finally…
Enjoy your Independence Day celebrations!
Clark was teasing me to no end on the sand bar at Blind Pass Sanibel when he told me he found something really good. Ut Oh. What!? Oh no you didn't! He said, "Yep!" and showed me a JUNONIA.
Ha! Yes, it's a JUNONIA...... a very worn JUNONIA. But still a whole one so, and yes, it's still better than what I've found....barely. ;)
After shelling Blind Pass, we decided to visit beach access #7 off West Gulf Drive since we haven't been there in months. Lots of TELLINS....
Oodles of SOUTHERN QUAHOGS....
I was tickled to find several large old worn WHELKS. I love these old "yard shells" so I line them up in an area in my garden to look at them every day.
The low tide in the late afternoons this whole week has been heaven.
Wrack of clams
All along Middle Gulf Drive beaches on Sanibel, there was a nice wrack line of PEN SHELLS and soooo many different CLAM shells. The first one is the SOUTHERN QUAHOG clam.
Southern Quahog Clam
It really has those beautiful blue stripes running through it but one of the most incredible things about this shell is that you can count the rings on this clam to tell how old it is…. like the rings of a tree! The second incredible fun-fact is that an Arctic QUAHOG found in 2007 was to be considered one of the oldest living animal on the planet. 405 year old! To read the whole story click on National Geographic.
I found several EGG COCKLE clams. They are as smooth as silk and actually feel like an egg in my hand.
Buttercup Lucines were everywhere
The BUTTERCUP LUCINE is another shell crafter favorite, as you can imagine with that pretty yellow inside.
There were even more DOSINIAS every step of my walk.
And oodles of ARKS with both side still attached.
Double ark and other clams
I didn’t see many of the regular faves like the CONES or CONCHS but the west winds will be moving in for the weekend so we might have better luck finding those and a TULIP or two. The best find of the day I saw was by Alice from Chicago. She was collecting the Buttercup Lucines and lots of the other clams but she was most proud of this perfectly large ANGEL WING. Great Find.
Alices' Angel Wing on drift wood
They’re baaack. We’ve been waiting all week for those west winds to push the shells up on the beach…. and now we got our wish. Shells were washing up at Blind Pass this afternoon but not on the new sand bar. They were piling up all along the beach at our old fave spot on the right side of the jetty rocks on Captiva.
Sani-Belles Val, Suzie, Ella (Mom), Ellene
My favorite finds yesterday were…. The Sani-Belles!! Girls know how to have fun in this family and they do it in their iLoveShelling tee shirts and named themselves Sani-Belles for their love of the islands! Shelling sister Sani-Belle Val from New Mexico (Every day I cherish that ornament she made me) brought her sisters Sani-Belle Suzie and Sani-Belle Ellene and their mom Sani-Belle Ella (California) out to Blind Pass at the perfect time of day laughing and giggling every moment with every scoop of shells they found.
Sani-belle Suzie's shell bag
Sani-belle Suzie has a pretty darn good shelling eye.
Sani-Belle suzie's Juvenile Southern Quahog
Look at the pattern on this JUVENILE SOUTHERN QUAHOG. I had a little difficulty identifying this shell because the pattern is so similar to the LADY-IN-WAITING VENUS clam. MurexKen came to the rescue again to help correctly identify it. I would have never thought something named a QUAHOG could be mixed up with a LADY-IN-WAITING (only perhaps in Shrek). Thanks MK!
Sani-Belle Suzie's tiny flat scallop
We also saw ALPHABET CONES, FLORIDA CONES, a LACE MUREX, HORSE CONCHS, WHELKS, colorful SCALLOPS and too many LETTERED OLIVED to count.
Lace Murex in shells
I couldn’t believe my eyes! I found a MERMAID resting on the jetty rocks!
It was crazy how many OLIVES were rolling in. We also found those huge (relatively speaking…. they are only 2 inches long ;)) AUGERS Every time the waves hit the shore, it seemed to bring AUGERS and OLIVES. Here’s a look at what we experienced yesterday. Enjoy the video.