When we go out boating in the backwaters along the Intracoastal Waterway in my area I love to stop at islands do some beach-combing. It’s been cold here in Florida (okay, you don’t feel bad for me, I get it) but finally we had a sunny day in the 70’s, so we went out on the boat.
Among the larger seashells I have found while checking out the wrack lines (up where the tide deposits stuff) is the knobbed whelk (Busycon carica). Usually they are partial shells, or nearly unrecognizable from wear and tear.
The one featured on this page was found just off-shore along a camping island which was deserted the day I was there. I’ve never found one this whole and beautiful. It was exciting to see.
The water that day was clear, and cold for Florida at 62 degrees. It was January but in the 70’s and sunny. I was wading in the shallow water along the beach when my son spotted this knobbed whelk under the water. This shell was sitting at the edge of that black area of water you see in the photo. Continue reading About the Knobbed Whelk Seashell and Mollusk→
This morning I had the urge to drive over to the beach. I live close enough now that I can do it, so I should! But the weather was cool and cloudy so I didn’t go for a walk, just got a few photos on my phone.
The parking lots, like this one, now charge people to park there! But, as a resident of Volusia County I can get a Free pass, which I plan to do soon. If the tide is high, I would prefer to park in a lot and not on the beach when I go for my morning walk.
The jetty at New Smryna Beach / Ponce Inlet, on the east coast of Florida, is one of the few places in the state where you’ll see big rocks. It’s popular for surfers and fishermen and it’s the most likely place to hear that a surfer has been being bitten by a shark – at least in that area of the state. A number of years ago, a friend of mine’s son had to go to the hospital with a shark bite when he was boogie-boarding near the jetty. Continue reading The Jetty at Ponce Inlet→
Anyone who lives near the coast probably has at least a few seashells in their home. Lucky them, they get to walk outside and gather what they like. The rest of us have to be more resourceful, and unfortunately spend money to buy items to create a coastal look.
So where is the best place to find nautical themed items? It depends on what you want your seashells, driftwood and sea glass for. If you want one, really nice, big seashell as a centerpiece display your buying options might be different than they are for someone who wants a bag of shells to create a mirror frame or craft item. Ebay and Etsy are good places to check for big shells, just be sure to read the descriptions well so you know exactly what to expect size-wise. Pictures of seashells can be deceiving.
Driftwood and large pieces of coral may be available at the local pet shop or fish aquarium dealer. Seashells might be available from these places too. Anyone who has ever had a fish tank will know that all sorts of water related items are used to decorate aquariums. And exotic animal cages use driftwood for lizards, iguanas and snakes to climb on.
I have written another article about where to find the coastal look for home decorating, and it contains some links for purchasing items.
Print out this free coloring page depicting a pail and shovel at the ocean shore. A “drippy” sand castle in the background and small starfish and sand dollar also decorate the page.
This drawing is free to use as long as it is not sold.
If you have never made a drippy sand castle, I’ll tell you that it’s lots of fun. I believe it works best on beaches where the sand is very fine and they must be made near the water where there is a good mix for some nice dripping action. They are easy to make in Florida.
Grab a bunch of wet sand and let is slowly drip out of your hand through your fingers. As each blog hits it will “melt” into a rounded blob and dry into its shape almost immediately making a drip. Make the drips smaller as you add height to the tower and see how high you can build it.