The double COQUINAS are back! We do see single COQUINAS all year long on our beaches of Sanibel and Captiva but I don’t see these beautiful butterfly shaped shells all year long like we’ve seen lately.
It was so much fun picking them up one right after the other, it reminded me of the WENTLING vid I did a while ago. Since you’ve given great feedback on my videos of my beach walks, I thought you’d enjoy collecting COQUINAS with me too. It’s a little long but I didn’t know where to cut it shorter…. sooooo, I still hope you like it.
They are so cute, right?
Don’t Forget iLoveShelling merchandise for Christmas!
I just love the little “butterfly” coquinas and spent quite a bit of time collecting them last week. When I soaked my shells in bleach/water the hinge disintegrated on each and every one of these, so now I have just singles. Next year no bleach?
Gretchen, the bleach dries out the ligament (which is the hinge that keeps them together) so next time, you are right… no bleach on coquinas!
very pretty coquinas. I haven’t really found any whole ones here on the East coast. Too bad.
Loved watching your video! It wasn’t too long at all. With all the coquinas you finding and hearing the ocean in the background, it felt like I was right there, if even just for a few minutes! Thanks!
Beautuful! Anyone know of a good way to keep them together once you get them home? I never have any luck with that……
After you clean them up and they dry, put a tiny drop of elmer’s glue at the joint, I’ve had GREAT luck doing that!! It works well on other shells also!!
Great idea! Elmer’s glue is also handy for strengthening the walls of sea urchins. This is what I did last year: I mixed the glue 50/50 with water, then dunked the cleaned out (and obviously found not alive) urchins in the glue solution. I then let the urchins dry on a piece of something non- absorbent, like wax paper. I have found that a couple of coats of this will help to save the spines, and if you pack carefully in a plastic container, you can even get them home in one piece in a suitcase….
I love coquinas! I saw a zillion you didn’t pick up.
So cool Pam ! I have a question , once they dry do they stay together pretty good or do they break apart ? Thanks again for sharing !!!!
The hinge ligament that joins the two valves together becomes brittle once it dries. if you carefully dry them in the flat position and then put them in a box on cotton (or fiberfill) so they don’t move around, they will be OK as they are. Otherwise, once they are dry, when they jostle around the ligament will usually break and you will have single valves.
Perhaps Sheri’s suggestion is the best idea, I have never tried that. Because I am a scientific collector I don’t put glue or other chemicals on the stuff I find.
I don’t routinely use bleach and water on shells either. Most ordinary bivalves there would be no need anyway, just a freshwater rinse and dry is good enough.
Thank you for the video. Love hearing the waves and the movement of the shells. Brings the beach to Ohio for a few minutes.
What do you do with all the coquinas you find?
Pam, your videos can never be too long!! Lol..
Love the sound of the waves swooshing in and out and the sound of the water over the shells. Sitting here drinking my morning coffee and watched the video twice imagining myself being their. What a lovely start to my day!
I always collect a container of coquinas when I come out. For those who are askin..they are delicate and will break apart if not careful. I always bring small tuperware containers with me shelling. I have a shelling back pack and keep one in it every time I go out. If I start finding the small stuff or delicate stuff I put it in the container so they dont break. Then when I wash em off and lay em to dry I always stop at the shelling shop when I arrive and pick up a thing of shell glue and gloss. So when the are all laid out I dab the hinge with glue. I travel back home with them in a plastic container. Ive never had any break apart doing it this way plus its less I have to wash and glue when I get home! Lol.
Traci – could you tell us what type of glue you pick up at the shell shop? I’ve been doing a “search” for shell glue on google and I’m finding a perplexing mix of answers.
They are so cute! I am amazed at the diversity of colors! And there were so many in a small area! Thank you for sharing the video, Pam. I feel like I am there…
Look at those gorgeous colors! I’ll have to take Traci’s advice and use glue next time on mine.
Coquina shells make me so happy.
Thanks for posting this video. You amaze me with your ability to collect one-handed, and film at the same time.
I survived last winter, and all those cold dreary evenings in North Carolina, by re-pairing the shells that had separated in storage. They are all so beautiful, especially up close. Between the inside and outside colors, no two were exactly alike. They all had just the right partner.
After drying them flat on a paper towel, I will definitely try the drop of glue on the hinge. I loved playing “concentration” last winter, but I’ll make other plans for this year.
Thank you so much for sharing the Coquina hunt!
Woke up today to snow here in Steamboat Springs, Colorado then saw your latest post. Made my day as I’d rather be in Sanibel shelling! I brought home a few coquinas when we were there in late October. They are the cutest! Love your website and the videos. I think I just may be able to survive this winter thanks to you Pam!
I think coqinas were my very first shell memory. As a kid growing up on Pinellas County beaches, we would dig our feet in the sand to uncover masses of coqinas & watch them desperately dig their way back to safety. . They looked like little butterflies to me. My mom still make little wire trees with the coquinas for leaves. My aunt used to make an old-timer Florida recipe of Coqina soup which was nasty & gritty – Don’t ever try it, why she made it was beyond me. If daiseys are a happy flower then coquinas are a happy shell :D
I love the coquinas too. It would be fun to see one of the wire trees your mom makes. I enjoy reading your blog. For some reason my comments won’t go through but that doesn’t keep me from enjoying it anyways!
This was such a fun video to watch. Thanks!
My husband and I just got back after spending a glorious Thanksgiving week on Sanibel. The weather was perfect: dry, breezy, warm in the day, cool at night. Great food, wonderful people, fun Farmer’s Market, over 80 total miles of beach walking/bicycling. My question is this: is it just me, or does anyone else have to stay away from these fabulous posts for the first few days after returning home? It’s just too bittersweet not being there! I read every single word normally, especially in the run up to a visit, but it’s almost painful being reminded of what I’m missing :-/ It’s been more than a week, so I’m back to reading, but wondered if anyone else felt the same? Thank you for each and every picture and word.
I don’t stop reading but it sure is tough sometimes. We try and come every year and the first 2 or 3 months after returning home are hard since it is such a long wait before I will be back on the island. But I can’t miss a picture or video, so,…. I log on every day. Hopefully you will be back soon.
I just found out that my trip to sanibel i booked for this coming Feb has to now wait until May at the earliest…i want to cry ! I may have to stay away from this page for a little while, its just too painful :( sorry Pam, you’re just too good at what you do!
Our weather is nicer in May! Feb is too cold sometimes. :-)
Hang on in there Donna. Fortunately your visit to Sanibel was not cancelled outright, just postponed a few months. Like Fran says, you will have better weather then, and maybe the sea goddess will throw you a nice storm so you can find all kinds of rare goodies. :)
Thank you for taking us along on your shell collecting. They are never ever too long!
I love your videos and NO they are not too long!!! It is my “escape” :)
Thank you, Pam!
Oh thank you Pam, ditto on what ALL the previous shellers said!!