November 13, 2017

And Another Six Months Later . . .

Rather than trying to play catch-up as I've been doing, I'm just going to share my latest trip to Sanibel Island, on the Gulf side of Florida. Sanibel is one of the top shelling places in the US; the best time to go is after a storm that is blowing NW, in the winter. When it's low tide at sunrise. No problem, right?! Hahaha. I arrived on the island at lunchtime on Sunday, the 5th, and left Tues. morning after a visit to Ft. Myers Beach. Sanibel Island is reached by a causeway that begins at Ft. Myers.

After having lunch at the Blue Giraffe, I found Algiers Beach, which I hadn't been to before in my past three visits . . . the shells were already well picked over by then.  :(


Sunrise at Sanibel Lighthouse Beach Monday (a week ago) morning . . .

Even though I got to the beach right before sunrise, there were already a handful of shell seekers scouring the shoreline. But I managed to find a few nice shells! Below, L to R: Apple Murex and a Pear Whelk.

L to R: Sunray Venus, Lace Murex, and a Florida Fighting Conch . . .

A Banded Tulip! I have a few of these but they're still an exciting find to me . . . especially the orange ones. The gray ones are easier to find, and not as pretty.


L to R: A small common nutmeg and a chestnut turban. I have a few of both.


My first full-size Colorful Moonsnail (top); I found two that day. Bottom: A piece of finger coral.


Sanibel Lighthouse Beach


The orchid hanging outside my hotel room . . .


Back home, a couple days ago, I cleaned most the shells I'd found . . . here's the two moonsnails . . .


And half of the shells I'd found in all . . . including sand dollars from Ft. Myers Beach.

May 09, 2017

A Tale of Two Aprils

Wow, I didn't realize six months have passed since I last posted on my Blog...I can now play catch-up with two separate years, April of '16 and of '17, gads. I no longer go to the beach on a weekly basis, but do try to get there every two weeks. And I've been to the Gulf coast twice since January, to one of two major shelling spots in S Florida, Sanibel Island. But that comes later... first things first!

April 2016

Beach therapy is about 90% uplifting time with the sand and sea...and 10% less pleasant moments, like coming across this barely alive hermit crab. I placed the crab and shell right by the incoming waves and walked away. I know it must've been washed into the ocean, but will never know if it survived.



The sunrises continue to amaze . . .


I made a rare visit to N. Peninsula Beach last year, just south of Flagler Beach, and found these three whole angel wing shells that someone had collected and left behind...or so it appeared anyway.



There are many types of egg casings from many sea critters...this one is from a tulip snail...




Late winter / early spring seems to be when the royal starfish shows up the most . . .





The sunrise is always changing . . .



Sand dollars also seem to appear late winter / early spring . . .



It's always fun to find a heart shaped shell piece or rock . . . I see on Facebook that many beach-combers like to collect these hearts.



I'm still enjoying seeing the unique color of each shark's eye (a moon snail) . . .



Another egg casing, aka a mermaid's purse... this is a skate egg case.



April 2017

Last month, my regular shelling beach at Matanzas Inlet and other NE beaches had an invasion of Portuguese Man-O-Wars. Beachings are most common Dec. thru May; April and May are supposed to be peak months for abundance. I saw dozens, lots of tiny ones, to these larger sizes.