Often I will pick up interesting pieces of seashells while beach-combing. I’m getting better at identifying the pieces. The more variety of shells I collect, the easier it becomes. If the bit of shell baffles me at the seashore, I search it out in my favorite seashell book, or look through my seashell collection.
Seashells break for many reasons and some shells are more fragile than others. The Channeled duck clam is thin and most of them are broken on top. (It’s the white shell in the left-hand photo below.)
Usually it’s the surf and wave action that tumbles the shell until it breaks. Birds can be the culprits too. Whatever the reason, it can challenge the mind to picture bits as whole shells. Usually I am sorry I missed seeing it as a whole, beautiful specimen.
While visiting Ponce Inlet, I brought home this large, smooth, brown bit of shell, and a smaller piece like it. I wondered what it could have been originally.
As I searched through pictures, it suddenly dawned on me. It must be part of a Shark’s Eye. They are smooth and brownish and can be fairly large.
I’ve found whole Shark’s eye shells out on the river quite a few times and I have a few in my collection. I think the best one I have came from the Gulf Coast, Sanibel Island area.
This broken bit with deep ridges had me curious for quite a while. After looking through my recently collected shells, I had an “Ah ha” moment. It’s the top section of an Angelwing shell.
As I’ve said, I am getting better at figuring out what I collect. Sometimes I remain stumped. The little porous piece below is not a shell, but I am not sure if it’s a piece of coral or something else. Often I have to search through my seashell book, like the time I found a round, smooth object and had no idea what it was. It’s the only sea bean I have.
I’ve found lots of Giant Cockle shells – usually when we are in the backwater areas fishing off our boat. When the tide is low, these big heavy duty shells are usually partially buried in the sand.