collecting sea shells on secluded island

Any day I’m on a boat, I’m happy. I’m even happier when that boat pulls up to a tropical island with strings of seashells lining a beach surrounded by aqua water.

stoop for shells on Cayo Costa

That’s why it was a very happy day on the iLoveShelling cruise to Cayo Costa yesterday.  Before we boarded our Captiva Cruises boat, I met Nan and John from Wisconson since I was immediately drawn to John’s home made shelling scoop. I love to see what different folks invent to make shelling a little easier (or more competitive! :)) so I praised his handiwork on the plastic slotted spoon on the end of a long wooden handle. Clever!

nan and john from wisconsin make shelling scoop

I should have know they would be awesome shellers. John made the find of the day (IMHO)- he found a MACULATED BABY’S EAR! He and Nan also found a PURPLISH TAGELUS, FALSE ANGEL WINGS, TRUE ANGEL WINGS, a KEYHOLE LIMPET, MORTON’S EGG COCKLE, and OPERCULUM (his first) and a juvie SOUTHERN QUAHOG.

maculated baby ear shell on iLoveShelling cruise

It was fun to meet locals Amy and Jeff from Fort Myers and seeing how many different shells she was collecting. Oh and… notice her  Seashell Identification guide attached to one of her shell bags? Love it!

amy jeff from fort myers find shells on pam rambo cruise

Amy pulled out a few of her favorite finds and of course my eyes went straight to the humongo BABYS EAR. Then I saw how sweet the mix was…. a BUBBLE, WHELK, COMB BITTERSWEET, MELAMPUS on the top row, then 2 PURPLISH TAGELUS, a COQUINA, another PURPLISH TAGELUS and then after the BABY EAR, a FALSE ANGEL WING.

seashells found on pam i love shelling tour

I saw lots of shellers finding PURPLISH TAGELUS shells.

purplish tagelus shell interior

Jane from Boston found a few treasures right where our boat anchored.

jane from boston find shells on shelling cruise


shells found on cayo costa cruise from captiva

Marsha and Robert (Georgia) found most of their treasures on the Gulf side of the island.

marsha Robert georgia find shells on i love shelling cruise

Looks like they found the OLIVE garden!

lettered olive shells on florida island

Marsha and Robert were sitting beside Rachel and Sherry on the boat and realized they lived only 30 minutes from each other in Georgia. Those Georgians can find some shells!

rachel and sherry from georgia with shells on i love shelling cruise

These were just a few of Rachel and Sherry’s finds. Out of the four SHARK’S EYES, we noticed that one of the SHARK’S EYES had blue in the center of the eye…. A PAUL NEWMANS EYE!

rachel and sherry display their shells from our cruise

It’s always fun to see families like Henry, Charles, Eric and Courtney’s family from Illinois learning about shells…

henry charles eric courtney illinois collecting seashells

And seeing friends like Gary, Roxanne Marge and Gordon (all from Chicago) sharing the adventures of a new beach together.

gary, roxanne, marge and gordon from Chicago visit Cayo Costa for shells

I met Linda earlier this year on another iLoveShelling cruise but she was calling herself The Queen Of Parts since she only found a slightly broken BABYS EARS and broken ANGEL WINGS.

linda minnesota queen of parts

 But then she found a few WORMIES, a gorgeous double ALTERNATE TELLIN, a BROAD PAPER COCKLE, FALSE ANGEL WINGS and an EGG COCKLE. Queen of Parts and Treasures!

shells and parts

 It was so much fun to find shells and share the sun filled day with beautiful happy people.

shellers with a sand dollar

My Shell Tree wish came true. Happy.

cayo costa shell tree

beach combing tour to cayo costa

angel wing among broken shells

And a MANATEE too!

manatee nose on captiva