Tropical Storm Andrea gave Southwest Florida pounding rain all day yesterday (and a little the day before) but didn’t seem to do much damage (if any … that I heard). It looks like we will have another round of heavy rain and wind today but before another storm band comes through again, I’ll try to take a peak at a couple of beaches to see if the site of shell piles rolling up on the shores look promising. If I hear thunder? We’ll have to wait it out and check the beaches when it settles again. Until then, I’ll show you what I found Tuesday evening at low tide on Fort Myers Beach just before the storm hit.
Yep, I said Fort Myers Beach! I had to be there Tuesday afternoon to meet somebody so I snuck out to the south end of the beach to see if there were shells. Oh my! I’d say YES!
As soon as I stepped on the beach, Linda from New Jersey was thrilled to show me all of her shells and SAND DOLLARS. I was amazed to see so many SAND DOLLARS!
Then I walked further down the beach to see Wesley from Kentucky holding up this huge LIGHTNING WHELK. Wow!
He had just met Ace (also from Kentucky) and his his wife (she’s camera shy) as they became fast friends finding out they had so much in common. Both being shellers from Kentucky was just a start!
Can you believe how many SAND DOLLARS Ace had in this bag? They were everywhere!
Look how happy this next family is! They all came from West Virginia to be together for a family reunion on Fort Myers Beach. That’s my kind of family reunion- shorts and tee shirts wading around in the water at the beach finding treasures together. Let me introduce you to this awesome family. From left to right… Jackie, Matt, Nancy, Charlie, Mike, Marc, Mollie, Lydia, Savannah and Michelle.
They combined all their loot then they will share it all later. What a wonderful idea.
Although… I didnt share the ALPHABET CONE I found. Oops! LOL
Nobody could have pried this next gem out of my hand either. I found a GOLDEN OLIVE! Boom Shellalaka! I still cant believe it. The lip is just a little bit ragged but the color- Oh, the color is spectacsheller.
I also found a MINOR JACKKNIFE on this beach. We’ve found these before but I dont think I’ve ever found one on Sanibel. Interesting, right?
And of course I found a few SAND DOLLARS too.
I saw lots of live MILLEPEDE STARFISH scooting along in the tidal pools….
And a beautiful dried BRITTLE STAR was mixed in with shell crumbles. I didn’t have a safe place to put it to get it home in one piece, so I left him on the beach.
It was funny to me that I didn’t find lots of the same shells. Yes, there were plenty of SAND DOLLARS… but it’s like I found one cool shell after another. Just one of a kind. Like this one ANGEL WING.
Can you identify this next half buried shell? Would you have seen it? I know who else would have seen it… Cheri B! LOL Remember? She picked up the SPINY JEWELBOX I missed in a video finding an ALPHABET CONE. Crazy!
As much as I hate to admit it, this is first time I’ve ever shelled on the south end of Fort Myers Beach near the “lagoons”… but it wont be my last! I had a blast!
But what I really can’t wait for is…. to see what Tropical Storm Andrea left on our beaches! She came in with strong SSW winds from the Gulf Of Mexico to blow through Southwest Florida so I’m sure most every beach on the island will have some good shells by sometime this weekend. When? Where? What? It’s hard to pinpoint because all storms are so different. But… since Andrea came in from the southwest, Lighthouse Beach would be a logical start. Although I’m excited to scout every beach, my experience with past storms tells me the waves will still be too rough for the shells to pile up on the beach just yet. But this is what’s fun… following the clues. I’m going to follow clues of areas collecting PEN SHELLS or other sea debris or BEACH BLING to narrow down the search for shells for this fabulous treasure hunt Andrea has given us. I’ll keep you posted!
PS- I’m just gonna go ahead and keep reminding everybody until the 15th … Enter To Win a Shelling Vacation on Sanibel! CLICK HERE!
Love the Golden olive..beautiful.
Pam you’r so much fun to follow I feel like I’m there with you
Gosh. So sweet to say that!
That’s right BOOM on that olive!
Beautiful Angel Wing. I’m so tempted to just get in my car and start driving south….
Gorgeous! So many sand dollars! That golden olive…love :)
Great golden olive! Can’t believe all those sand dollars. Did some cyber-shelling with your last photo. We’re expecting to get heavy rain this afternoon from the storm. Hope the shells come rolling in.
Love that first shot! It looks like the shells are sitting on a magic carpet, ready to fly away!
hahah- I looked back at it…and it kinda does! LOL
OMG I am SO jealous!! The waves just left a lot of seaweed on the beaches here in Alabama!! I did get to go down yesterday, and scoop sand and found lots of olives and conchs!! Thanks to the beach renourishing project guys – they are pumping up lots of good stuff for us to treasure hunt!
Can’t wait to come to Sanibel!!
Another golden olive! Love it! And I really love the big sunray venus clams too. Hope Andrea brings in lots of treasures with her!
A lot of times, a storm’ll bring a bunch a great shells.
We are going to Cherrygrove Beach for a week in 8 days.. Still trying to decipher whether this storm is going to stir up shells along the SC coast.
Cheri B. Here!!! I would like to think I would have found it too….but I’m a little out of practice!! :) We will be coming in on Saturday, so hopefully the shells will be coming in from the storm!! Then I’ll get my ‘practice’ in!! I have never been to Ft. Myers Beach, since I am now officially a resident, that is just one of many I need to check out!! Thanks for keeping us all informed of our beautiful paradise Pam, You’re awesome!!
When we visit Fort Myers Beach (winter vacations in February) we always can count on the beach near Holiday Inn for producing many sand dollars! At Sanibel we find paper figs. Funny how that works.
Thank you for your website. Your pictures and stories help me relive my fun and relaxing times there. ;-) <3
Love your page, missing Sanibel was there in April. I love the starfish have lots of pictures of them. Is it true that it is best not to pick them up becuase they will drop a leg?
I’m going to Sanibel tonight after work with my 20 year old son. Do you think I should go to Lighthouse or Blind Pass? It’ll be Jake’s first exposure to shelling and I want him to love it. BTW, we’re going on your cruise on June 19th. Can’t wait to meet you!!
Genine, My husband and I are also going on the cruise on the 19th. We will be leaving Ohio on the 14th and stopping at different beaches along the way…Can’t wait to get to Sanibel See you there. Loree
Yay! I’ll look forward to meeting you! I’ll be the one dragging the reluctant 20-year-old along. He decided not to come with me on Thursday night as I had hoped, but we were at Lighthouse Beach on Saturday and while I sunbathed, he and my brother walked along the beach and brought me back some shells. I may get him to love shelling after all. ;-)
Wishing you safe travels to Florida. See you on the 19th.
YAY! I get to meet you both too!
How’s the shelling on Captiva? We are on Fort Myers Beach and it’s not very good today.
If you ask me, finding a golden olive is better than finding real gold! Lol!
I met you when I was on spring break back in march just before you were going to be interviewed by the Minnesota Twins during their spring training. I love your blog and I’ve been reading it for about a year and a half now, I love the archives on the side that allow me to look at your posts from the past and I cam across the albino lightening whelk you posted. Lightening whelks were what got my shelling obsession started. Any ways I have a shell that I cannot identify that is bone white and I can’t tell if its albino or sun-bleached or just the type of shell it is. That got me thinking you should open a forum where people can leave questions or pictures of shells they can’t identify, where you and other viewers can help some shelling sistahs out! Either way love your website!
I do have a place to post photos! I have a facebook page so we all can help identify- go to https://www.facebook.com/iLoveShelling
I’m guessing I would need to join Facebook. I’m so glad the only thing Adrea did was to wash up shells. Al least, I didn’t hear of any damage in Florida. I live in the New Orleans area and always keep a watchful eye on the storms.
That is the nicest golden olive ive seen in 43 years, Pam”
I have family in Ft. Myers visiting from KC and I tried to talk them into shelling between storms, but that was a “no go”. You showed us what they missed–they are nuts not to shell at every opportunity!
What does the presence of pen shells indicate in regard to shelling? Where we have stayed several times in the past, nearly every time we have visited, there have been so many pen shells on the beach, but we could seldom find a shell that we would carry back.
Hi Pam – what a nice souvenir photo for the reunion family to take home! Besides being a great sheller, you’re a great photographer too! That brittle star was beautiful. I would have definitely found something to be able to take it home safely – can’t believe how perfect that center star is. Was at Blind Pass Friday with my neighbor and the surf was really rough but we did get a few nice shells.
So excited to post some photos on your facebook page, I had no idea! Thanks Pam!
Andrea is coming up to the East Coast. Hoping it brings shells to LBI in NJ. Since Hurricane Sandy’s recovery efforts, our beaches are wide with sand fill. Probably will not get any shells for a few years! Very jealous of Sanibel beaches!