One of the first “seashells” I wrote about on this blog was the starfish. However, it is not a seashell but echinoderm and is related to the sea urchin, sea cucumber and sand dollar. In other words, they don’t have a hard shell. If you find dried starfish, they can break easily.
Where I live in Florida I have never found a starfish, living or dead. But the State Park I visit has specimens of Florida starfish under glass. In fact, near the rest rooms, they have all kinds of dried and dead things. One item looked like the huge head of a sea turtle! I should have taken a photo – maybe next time.
Starfish live offshore, as do most mollusks with shells. But starfish and other echinoderms are not as sturdy as a hard shell and therefore most likely break apart because of wave action once they are dead. I find pieces of sand dollars near Ponce Inlet and sometimes at the drive-on ocean beach, but I think dead starfish are pulverized before they get to the beach.
Get more info on the 9-legged (or 9-armed) starfish (Luidia senegalensis) at this site which mentions that they are found mainly from the Sebastian Inlet south on the Eastern side of Florida. This is south of where I live. They are also found on the West coast and in the Keys and on down to Brazil.
My Drawings Are Free For Personal Use
Please help yourself to the printable images below and maybe use them as a teaching page / coloring page for the kids. As long as you do not sell my images, use them as you please. Make copies for friends and classroom use. A link back here is appreciated when the chance arises.
I’m no expert on marine life, and certainly not on starfish. The Florida Fish and Wildlife site has a full page, with photos of living creatures and links to each Marine Life Invertebrates including a few starfish. It’s an interesting page.
One of the things I used to offer on this blog was free, printable coloring pages with pictures of seashells. Readers seemed to appreciate the printables and I’ve wanted to bring them back. Let’s start with the Scaphella junonia.
I have begun to create some new pages that contain seashell outlines. These coloring pages are free to anyone for personal or classroom use. Homeschool moms and dads especially like to use them in their marine biology studies.
Aside from schooling, these free pages can be used to keep youngsters happy when they may otherwise be bored. Take along for a car or plane trip to keep the kids occupied and away from the tech devices. Use at the kids table at a wedding event. Be sure to provide lots of crayons and felt pens in a wide array of colors.
Kids, and even adults, may learn something from the images. I’ll provide the common name of the shell (what I call it!) and the scientific name, if possible. I’ll include a real photo of the shell on my blog, when possible, just in case that is helpful.
You may be able to find old coloring page images on this blog, but from here on out the pages will be newly created. Some of the old ones may have a reference to “Squidoo”, which is defunct. The new pages will have my SeashellsbyMillhill blog listed.
Let’s start the coloring collection with a favorite shell called the junonia, or Scaphella junonia (scientific name). It’s also known as Juno’s volute. I have written about this shell before. I don’t have one in my collection of shells mainly because I have only visited Sanibel Island a couple of times. And both times I knew nothing about collecting rare seashells. I’m sure I was an oddball on the island at the time, since most people visiting Sanibel know it’s a shellers paradise.
The Junonia seashell is unmistakable with its spotted coloring. If you should find one, you will have yourself a rare shell.
Florida’s west coast is the place to beach-comb if you want a junonia shell for your collection. Sanibel Island beaches occasionally have them wash up. Even a shell that is not in the best condition would be a wonderful find.
I have drawn a couple images over the years of this unique seashell and you may download and print them out to use at home or for homeschool.