Nick Hahn tulips close up

I got a call from friend and shelling guide Captain Brian about this guy Nick Hahn who comes to Sanibel every year and is a shell magnet. This year in only one week, he found these two huge colorful TRUE TULIPS! He found one at Cayo Costa (on one of the out islands on a shelling trip) and the second one he found in between Blind Pass Sanibel and Bowmans Beach. He said he even found a few more but they were alive so he had to put those back.

nick Hahn true tulips

He also found a white spined SEA URCHIN that someone told him was special. Hmmm. I’ve seen a few of these on the beach but I just assumed they were just bleached by the sun. So when I saw this one with all of his other beach combing  treasures, I looked it up. Sure enough, there is a WEST INDIAN SEA EGG found in Florida (but mostly more south in the Caribbean) with white spines.

Tripneustes ventricosus sea egg

After looking closer, the test is of this URCHIN is almost black instead of the purplish color of the PURPLE SEA URCHIN that we often see after a storm. I’ll have to add this to my Beach Bling Identification page!

Tripneustes ventricosus sea egg mouth

 Isn’t it so appropriate that he also found this very unusual pattern on a FIGHTING CONCH with the letter “H” on it ….. for Hahn? Congrats on all your special finds, Nick!

fighting conch with letter H