Our Bahamas beach bounty! We just returned from an awesome week of shelling with friends the Abacos, Bahamas while sailing from Marsh Harbor to the islands of Lynyard Cay, Elbow Cay, Man-O-War, Great Guanna Cay and Spoil Bank Cay. We scoured every beach we came across in search of seashells, beach bling and to soak in the island views. At the end of the week, Clark and I sorted through our shells to compete in our Shell N Tell with our friends. Ha! We found SEA BEANS, SEA GLASS, BUOYS, SEA FANS, SEA BISCUITS, URCHINS, SEA POTTERY, TELLINS, CONES, MUREXES, TRITONS, TUNS and so much more.
We had a few days of rain but we made the best of it.
We have heavy hearts for the folks on Nassau, Grand Bahama Island, Chub Cay and the islands west of the Abacos who were hit very hard by Hurricane Matthew just weeks before our vacation. The Abacos escaped from Matthew’s devastating path but feel the pain for their other islands. Other than choppy water and a few residual storms, the only sign of strong winds from the hurricane were piles of QUEEN CONCHS washed up high on the beach and a few damaged docks on Guanna Cay.
We didn’t find piles of any other shells on their beaches but searching high and low we found a few beautiful shells like this ANGULAR TRITON which is not native to our own beaches of Sanibel Island or on the west coast of Florida.
If there was something interesting to find on any of the beaches, this bunch of explorers found it. Our boating friends Roger, Sandy, Jane, Captain John (Johnny Rescue), Clark and yours truly found a beach with spectacular views but not one shell. After combing every crevice of the beach, we all came back to show our favorite finds… SEA FANS. haha There’s always something!
Shell N Tell with Jane and John was hard to beat. John found this shellmongous PUFFER SEA BISCUIT and juvie KING HELMET.
Jane found a perfect HAWK-WING CONCH and a gorgeous display of caramel colored FLORIDA WORM SHELLS.
So our Shell N Tell doesn’t really tell the whole story since I took the photo of Sandy and Roger after they had already packed some of their fragile shell-loot. I wish I could have shown the fabshellous TUN SHELL Roger found!
Sandy was thrilled to find her first FLAMINGO TONGUE.
Since the water was still a little choppy and stirred up from the hurricane, it wasn’t easy to get local seafood for our meals … so we hired Capt. James who promised “I’ll find some local food for ya, Baby Girl”. heehee We still didn’t have luck with fish or spiny lobster but he dove for QUEEN CONCH and made us an oh-so tasty conch salad. Yum!
Since the QUEEN CONCH was “over-fished” many years ago, Capt. James was very careful not to take any juvenile CONCHS- only the adults which have a flared lip. This is their way of life and a food source for the Bahamians so he wants to make sure the population stays healthy by being cautious to not fish for smaller CONCHS with a lip that isn’t formed so they can reproduce. To read more about QUEEN CONCHS … http://www.communityconch.org
We also made a stop at my favorite fabric store with hand made designs from Bahamas… Sally’s Boutique in Man-O-War Cay. I met the owner Mandy (in the middle) a few years ago after buying a set of starfish place mats and found out Mandy, Cassie (on the right) and Mandy’s best friend Lisa love shelling too. It’s so much fun talk to the locals about their beaches so now we make it a regular stop (and do a little shopping!). I got napkins and wristlets this year- they’re such happy island fabrics.
I didn’t find any incredibly unusual shells but I always have a spectacsheller time combing the beaches for minis like these LIMPETS, WEST INDIAN TOP SHELLS and NERITES.
Ya just never know what you’re gonna find.
I think John’s HELMET and PUFFER SEA BISCUIT won our little Shell ‘N Tell competition… errrr….. well, other than that creepy but very funny baby doll arm I found on the beach and stuck in the conch. haha
Hands down, each one of us feels like we won a prize as we watched the beautiful sunset over the Sea Of Abaco each day.
As we are comb the beaches of the world one island at time.
For more info on shelling the Bahama Islands…
Captain James 1-242-458-2380
Gone Shelling… To The Bahamas!
Beach Combing Vacation – Cat Island, Bahamas
Gone Shelling – To The Bahamas
Shelling Trip To Grand Bahama Island
Gone Shelling – Abaco Islands, Bahamas
In The Pink From The Bahamas
Beach Combing The Abacos Bahamas
After a week sailing, snorkeling and beach combing in the Bahamas, I’m feeling in the pink. So are our seashells! As I unpacked each of these lovely gems admiring their beauty and remembering how much fun it was to find them, I realized how many Caribbean seashells from the Bahamas are pink. Even the OLIVES are pink! We found lots of NETTED OLIVES but 2 of them were gorgeous glossy passionate pink.
They rolled up in the surf on Great Guana Cay.
It’s taking me a bit longer than I expected to get to photos of our shells in order and identified properly so I can share a few more of these pink beauties up close and personal. I think those little pink shells at 5 o’clock in the first picture are SMOOTH ATLANTIC TEGULAS but there are some others mixed in that are different so I need to research them. Then I will show close-ups! Also, I believe those pink TRIVIAS are COFFEE BEACH TRIVIAS but holy cowrie- they are sooo brilliant and bright pink! So until I can get those treasures photographed, I have included a few photos of the other cool things we found …and…. I made a little video of some of the fun stuff we did while on our search for shells. Enjoy!
Clark gave me TULIPS! Just walking along the beach going to dinner at Nipper’s, he found two spectacsheller TRUE TULIPS.
He also found 3 amazing CARRIER SHELLS (I was happy to find one more to add to our loot). Remember I told you we were looking for packable, light weight shelling scoops a couple of weeks ago? Well Clark got creative and picked up a lacrosse stick at Sports Authority to try it out for a shelling scoop. He unscrewed the plastic basket from the aluminum stick to fit it into our new wheeled duffle bag (Costco special) and used it everyday while beach combing and snorkeling. It worked! He loved it!!! LOL
John found a DOG-HEAD TRITON while he was snorkling!
After a couple of hours snorkeling (as you can tell by his pruney fingers- heehee), he came back to the boat to say he had the find of the week. Shellzam! Yes, he did! It doesn’t look like a great shell in this next photo but trust me, once it’s cleaned up, it will be a beautiful specimen. He said he saw an Octopus as well so maybe the OCTOPUS had just eaten this guy for lunch because it only has a small part broken off the “tail”. I love those DOG-HEADS.
I found a dried up CUSHION SEA STAR in the high wrack line on one of the beaches too. I was able to put it in plastic tupperware for the ride home… and it made it!
Such a fun time to spend with a group of friends on Sunsail’s The Talisman V that love shelling as much as we do!
To be continued…. but check out my last post if you missed the first half of this trip CLICK HERE .
And don’t forget we have some other shelling adventures you can join too…. CLICK HERE.
We love exploring new shelling destinations… but sailing the Abaco Islands in the Bahamas on a 44 foot Sunsail catamaran searching for sea shells is spectacsheller!
Clark and I just returned from this fabshellous Bahamian vacation with blue skies and good friends. We have traveled with our friends Jane and John to other islands like Turks and Caicos as well as Cat Island but this was the first time we had the privilege of sailing with them on the Talisman V from Marsh Harbour with John as our captain along with friends Dick, Mary and Karen. We were quite the crew of beach bling sniffin’ shellers.
We sailed to a different island every day, set our anchor then hopped in our dinghy to comb every inch of the beaches looking for tiny hidden treasures…
We snorkeled in crystal clear aqua waters to find unbelievably gorgeous gems like this SEA BISCUIT and KING HELMET Clark found one day.
The Talisman V was not only our transportation, it was our beautiful home for the week with breathtaking views that changed every second of the day.
We even had unmatched waterfront private dining by the best chef in town… Super Sheller Clark grilled lobster for us 2 nights! Really, how did I get so lucky?
I am thrilled with the shell loot we brought back but with no good internet connection, I couldn’t post anything to share with you in the last 5 days- grrrrr. But now that we are home I will organize, identify and take a few more photographs of the different Caribbean shells we found and try to map our route just in case you are ever in the same area. It’s weird though… now that I’m looking back at my photos, it’s hard to remember exactly which island we found which shells. Eeeeek- I’ll have to get some help on each destination from the rest of the crew! Until then….
Stay tuned for more lovelies like this QUEEN CONCH…