Monday, February 11, 2013

"The grand show is eternal. It is always sunrise somewhere; the dew is never dried all at once; a shower is forever falling; vapor is ever rising. Eternal sunrise, eternal dawn and gloaming, on sea and continents and islands, each in its turn, as the round earth rolls." John Muir

Even the shy guys come out of their shell to watch the sunrise.

Sunrise at 7am - Low tide at 7:30.  My favorite spot to converge with nature is Boca Grande.

A 20 minute drive puts me on the beach right as the sky is waking up.

My camera batteries went dead so all my pictures were taken on my iPhone.  I caught a huge parade of pelicans crossing the pass heading south to Cayo Costa Island on the other side.

Someone must have missed the pre-flight meeting.

A little Egret sashays by.  He was making sure I didn't have a bait bucket with some freebies for him.

My heart leapt in my chest when I spotted this beauty in the shallows.

The hermit crab chose a lovely Horse Conch for a home.  Sadly, this one went back in the water.

Huge Lightning Whelks were everywhere in the shallows of the low tide.  It was fun just to have a closer look and then place them back where they were found.

This Orange-ridged Sea Star is common to find in the tidal pools around rocks and mangrove roots.

Another shell tree in full bloom.  There is just something about a barren tree on the beach that begs for a shell to be hung on it's empty branches.

The last vestiges of the old Port Boca Grande used by the phosphate industry back in the early 1900's.  The birds are making good use of it now.

On August 13, 2004 Hurricane Charley took out the pier on the west side of the island. Tip - Park at the public lot on the south side of the South Beach Restaurant > walk to the beach & head south to the pier. The shelling is usually very good in that area especially after a storm.

Beach sunflowers - Here's another post I did on Boca Grande.


  1. Beautiful. I love finding empty shells, but I love finding the lives ones even more sometimes. And there can never be too many shell trees -- my favorite local flower!

  2. Sweet horse conch!

  3. You captured some gorgeous photos my friend. Great shells too!

  4. Hi Karen, thanks for stopping by today - long time no see! Do you know I've lived here in Nokomis for almost 17 years and have yet to get over to Boca Grande. Crazy isn't it?!!

  5. Oh Karen..........keep your eyes open to the open waters....Blew Bayou left at 6:30 tonight from Isla Mujeres headed for Fort Myers......just maybe you'll see him sailing right past you on one of your shelling days!!!

  6. Love the morning shot of the pelicans, really beautiful. If permitted do you ever take a live shell? I will on occasion if permitted take a live shell to add to my collection. Some people feel that is wrong and I was wondering what your opinion is on the matter?

    1. When we were kids growing up on the beaches of Dunedin & Clearwater in the 70's the ecological mindset was much different. We took live shells all the time. Most shell books written in the 60's & 70's focused on how to get the live animal out of the shell by boiling, freezing or burying. But the times they are a changin.....

      Today in 2013 most counties in Florida allow you to take 2 live shells per day with the exception of Lee County which has zero tolerance. So, that being said my personal feelings are no - I do not take live shells. This is my personal conviction so if the law allows and you feel otherwise then follow the law at any given place. I know how hard it is to throw that live huge anything back in the water or heaven forbid - a live junonia but personally if I'm not going to eat it - I'm not going to take it's life. This also applies to roaches, spiders, mice, & intruders living in the wild But if you are in my kitchen cabinets - you gonna die.

    2. You are so right it is so different now. I remember eating fresh caught scallops, clams, oysters and Dad caught alot of mullet with his castnet. I love that we grew up 5 minutes from the beach and I still do. It is in our blood.

  7. Those are some big hermit crabs in those big shells! Great pics of them ;)
    I am just achin' to get down there on your beaches and check out these pretty secluded places. One of these days m' of these days.

  8. Thank you for the great words from Mr.John Muir. The photos of the white pelicans were excellent. It makes me want to get up early and see Cayo from the pespective of Boca. Thank you Karen for giving me new perspective on a place I love so much.(Time to set my alarm clock for 3 am)


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