Monday, January 17, 2022

Winter Storms and Negative Tides

I haven't had much to Blog about lately....for the first time ever, Liz and I went to the beach a couple days ago and I came home EMPTY handed. We needed some of those Winter storms down here to stir the Gulf up. I've spent my time lately crafting for the upcoming Shell Show with the Sanibel Shellcrafters and painting shells to hide.....

Yesterday the storms came....the bad news is we had 3 water spouts turned tornadoes here in Fort Myers. I have a couple of friends who have damage to their homes. Jimmy and I heard that iconic 'freight train' just once and for only a few seconds. According to the weather and alarms on our phones, they were on 3 sides of us over a course of 3 hours. Interesting morning to say the least. We thankfully are perfectly fine, the damage begins just down the road with Palms Fronds ripped, all the way to Modular homes completely sad, my prayers go out to each and every one of them.

After the storms hit, (Which was a cold know the one that dumped all that snow and Ice) we got more strong winds, along with high surf advisories.....there it is! Stirring up the Gulf!!! So of course Liz and I were out there at O dark thirty, to catch the tides right....negative tides!!

The once barren beach, had everything you can imagine out there! You know me, I love the live stuff almost as much as the shells!

There were LOTS of Live Horse Conchs!

Some of these guys were HUGE!!
Even this guy that was attached to the side of a crab.....the crab is dead, the beautiful orange Horse Conch isn't! ;)

I saw this huge Nine armed SeaStar first thing.....I love these guys!! He was very much alive!!
A beautiful Live Pear Whelk....
....and a Whole bunch of  Big True Tulips...Live of course! Everything this morning was on Steroids!!! Huge!!

As the sun rose, I spotted several shells that had these Tulip Egg Casings attached! 

It looks like ruffles when they all are put closely together!!

Liz and I saved this eel....I couldn't find it in any of my books, so I googled it, and I think it might be a Moray! Anyone out there know??

He was pretty sluggish, but hopefully he will come around!!

Liz found this Lightning Whelk with a pretty impressive Hermit inside!!
There were also a BUNCH of Live Lightning Whelks, which is always so nice to see!!!
This is a Flame Streaked Box Crab.....unfortunately, I don't think he was alive! ;(

So, not all of it was live.....I found quite a few treasures.....

I found this Horse Conch first.... 
Not very good....maybe I'll look some more....

Now That's better!!!
A few more steps, and found this one.....
Not great....keep looking!! 
I found a beautiful Shark's eye, Nice Gaudy Nautica & colorful little Pear Whelk.                                    
Then this HUGE Shark's eye!
Then I quit taking pictures....between the flashlight and fingers rummaging around in the sand, I gave up on the camera....I did however almost catch the sunrise!

I'd say I hit the jackpot this morning!!! Wouldn't you??
Check out the color on this horse!!!! It should clean up beautifully!

Stay Tuned for the 'AFTER' pictures, a few days of soaking in bleach water and some TLC and it should be beautiful!!
 Such a fun day.... I Had to get the Sanibel Shellcrafters by 8:30 so I left....Tomorrow is another day!!! ;)

::Shelllady Hugs::

Wednesday, January 5, 2022

Out for a Spin on the beach!!

Hubby decided to go out to the beach with me this morning!!! It's still negative low tides and we have had rip tides the last couple of days....hoping it would stir us up some shells! He doesn't like going out in the dark, and the lowest tide was to be around all the stars aligned and we gave it a try!! Obviously we weren't the only ones out there taking a 'spin' at the beach! :D

This is a live Apple Murex 'taking a spin' toward a Live Horse Conch, Ark & Cockle!

Here is a live Ark shell 'taking a spin' on the beach!

The weather was Beautiful....and the sky was too, Sanibel Sunrises and Sunsets don't disappoint!!

There were a lot of Live shells out there....especially Scallops...notice the little black/bluish spots along the curves of the shell....those are his eyes!! 

These guys were all over the the high tide line, low tide line and in the water....they're so funny....they periodically 'Chatter' like those old timey windup teeth...and they'll spit water too! You can't help but giggle at them....

Here's a short video...I tried to catch them, but couldn't be in just the right place at the right time...(there's a  longer one (1 min) at the end of this blog post just for fun....

You can see them opening and closing, 'chattering and spitting'!!

There were also lots of live Sea Urchins...

This is a fairy unusual thing to find on these's a Skate Case....Baby Skates are in here and hatch through a slit in the end....
One nickname for them is Mermaids Purse.....

I held this up to the light and could see he was in there so I tried to get a picture of it and returned it to the Gulf....You can barely see some red from the light shining through at the bottom...needed a brighter light to get a good pic!
Hubby seemed to enjoy the walk and the hunt....
I found a nice Olive...a "Sheila Shell" we call them, (I save them for our friend Sheila!)

Believe it or not I actually picked up a Fighting Conch!! I don't usually save them as I have so many....but this one was a bright Orange and I couldn't resist....thats a neon red True Tulip with it! Pictures just don't do them justice!!!

On the left are my finds, on the right are hubby's. We didn't get a whole lot, but we spent some time together, got some beach therapy and saw some cool things!! Always the best!!

Stay tuned!!

::Shelllady Hugs::

PS...Here's a little longer video of the Sea Urchin Chatter! can hear them!! Enjoy!!


Saturday, January 1, 2022

A New Year...Welcome 2022

We are back in our favorite home.... in Fort Myers! Hopefully sometime this new year, 2022, it will become our only home, but we will just have to see how long it will take us to downsize and make the final move!!

Tides this week are negative lows....way low! Its early in the morning so it will be flashlight shelling for me most of this week....which honestly I love!! Liz and I went out early yesterday, though not early enough to really find anything...I think I found a sharks eye and a nutmeg! I went out solo today and did a little bit better.... tide was lower and I had a little more time before it began to come back in! 

There was a lot of sea life out there this many different varieties of crabs! Here's just a few! One of my favorites...a Calico Crab

I believe this is called a Spider Crab

and it's really hard to tell what kind of crab this is, maybe a tiny Spider crab?? He was carrying around a blanket of sand and moving right along! 

There were lots of Starfish...or Sea Stars....

So if the one above is a Sea Star....what is this called?? A Sea Plus? Sea Tee?? Sea Cross?? ;)

You might be surprised how often I see these....they typically will grow their legs back, so I assume this is only temporary!

There wasn't a whole lot out there, but as I always say, I enjoy the walk and the 'adventure' so much....and I'm home by breakfast!!

I found a perfect Angel Wing...

...and this guy!! He was really wedged in the sand, I had to dig all the way around him to get him to move, and lifted him out....only his 'knobs' were sticking out!

I tried to give him to a nice couple that happened by, but they were going to fly back home today and couldn't figure out how to pack him up to take we left it on the beach for someone else. I think I saw someone pick it up later....I have a few of these and it didn't have a perfect point, so I decided to let someone else have it this time!!

The moon was amazing this morning, a crescent...just above the horizon, apparently I'm pretty shaky and my Camera is not made for this, but I tried to take a turned out pretty cool I think! Kinda like a Star Wars sky!!!

Here's what I came home with this morning...

This was just a Short post to wish all of you a Happy New Year and let you know a little bit about what's going on with us! Again, Happy New Year to you and your families!

Stay Tuned...

::Shellllady Hugs::