lightning whelk egg case2

I wasn’t able to enjoy the shelling while the super moon tides were at the lowest this weekend since I was tied up with other “stuff”. But high on the wrack line there are still so many LIGHTNING WHELK EGG CASES on the east end beaches of Sanibel.

lightning whelk egg case

Since I’ve been dissecting some of the BEACH BLING I’ve found over the last week (like the SEA WHIPS), I decided to go ahead and open up one of the dried out LIGHTNING WHELK EGG “disks”.

whelk egg chain babies

open whelk egg case

There are teeny tiny little LIGHTNING WHELK shells in some of the disks.

whelks in egg case

Isn’t that just a wonder? Talk about miniatures!

juvenile whelks from case

There can be up to 40 babies in each capsule. Isn’t that incredible?

close up juvenile whelk

 I didn’t find that many discs with baby WHELKS in them in this case because it looks like most of them “hatched” already. You can see a little round hole on top side of the discs… this is escape hatch! They use this when they are ready to explore their brave new world.

lightning whelk egg escape hatch

Just to show you how teeny tiny the WHELKS I popped out of the case were, I’ve added one of these little juvies in this Wheel of Whelks surrounding a penny.

whelk size growth