Today we went out on the boat. It’s been a while since we’ve gone out because the weather has cooled off. We weren’t out for long, and stopped at some favorite beaches because the tide was out.
There wasn’t much to see, and then … there it was! A living horse conch. The bright orange snail was hanging out of the shell and I could see the operculum – the hard part that covers the opening when the conch goes back into it’s shell.
Click on the photos and they will enlarge.
Low tide is the best time to search for interesting sea life, but on Three Sisters there wasn’t much. Also the ground was very muddy and slippery. Water temp is only 67 degrees now (January) so we don’t swim this time of year. It was sunny and warm because there wasn’t much of a breeze.
It’s not the first time I’ve come across a living horse conch out on these muddy flats. I never get tired of seeing them and admiring their beauty. This one was only around 10 inches long. They can grow to be twice this size!
The snail did not move at all as I approached, and I hoped it wasn’t dead. After I took a few photos, I gently lifted the back end and sure enough it began to move, so I left it alone.
The shell of the conch was encrusted with barnacles and other things. When the tide comes back in, he will be just underwater, I suspect. This little island is off the beaten path, but there were markings of boats pulling up.
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