Beach combing St George Island
March 4th & 5th, 2008
We arrived on Tuesday, but on Wednesday headed to to St George Island for some shelling or rather "beach combing".
When Joyce & I arrived on St George Island we immediately headed to St George Island State Park where we plan to do our beach combing. We are heading to St George Island State Park because that is where we can find shells and other floatsum that makes its way onto the beach.
But now, back to the shelling, I mean, beach combing. There may be a few broken shells on public beaches on other parts of the island but the "good" beach combing, on St George Island, is located deep in St George Island State Park. The best shelling is reached by driving to the parking lot at the far end of St George Island State Park ----- don't worry about finding this parking lot since there is just one road in the State Park. Once parked in the parking lot start walking down the beach in the same direction you have been driving. Resist looking for shells for about 30-minutes. Everyone can walk for 30-minutes so good shells within about 30-minutes walk of that parking lot are pretty scarce ---- they have been picked over to say the least.
After walking for 30-minutes you can start looking for shells but keep in mind that the further you get from that parking lot the better the shelling will be. So, keep moving away from the parking lot. The further you go the better the shelling becomes since fewer and fewer people are picking over them. If by chance you are visiting the area when a storm comes through make sure to get out to the beach for some shelling early the morning after the storm. Storms always wash new shells and other sea life on the beach and "the early bird gets the shell".
Crab shells on beach at St George Island State Park
Crab shells such as this colorful crab are some of the normal objects found when combing the beach looking for shells in St George Island State Park.
Nice fig shell on beach at St George Island State Park
It is always exciting to find a shell like this on the beaches of St George Island State Park.
Large star fish on beach in St George Island State Park
This large starfish was just one of many that had washed ashore here in St George Island State Park. This one was in perfect condition and we could have taken it back and dried it out. But, we were wiser than that. Wiser, in that we know that freshly dead starfish will start stinking very bad within a few hours. We don't want to put this starfish in a storage compartment of the motorhome for our ride home. However, this starfish would make a good specimen if we could just dry it out before it had to be transported.
Skate egg case on beach at St George Island State Park
This is a skate egg case. We actually found a number of these egg cases on this beachcombing adventure at St George Island State Park. In case you do not know what a skate is think about a creature that looks like a stingray. Remember it was a stingray that stuck Crocodile Hunter? Well skates are smaller than those stingrays but they look similar.
Perfect pin shell on beach at St George Island State Park
This pin shell had just recently washed ashore. They are noted for having a pearl like luster on the narrow end with a mixture of colors ranging from silver to blues and purples.
These fragile shells are pretty common on the beach at St George Island State Park.
Leapord crab shell on beach at St George Island State Park
I am captivated by the color and patterns in this crab shell.
Whole pin shells can be found walking the beach at St George Island State Park
This is another pin shell. As you can see this was a beautiful day to be on the beach. When pin shells are alive they generally live in grass with the narrow end embedded in the sand with the larger end sticking up. Notice how the larger end has a coating of barnacles. Barnacles attach to almost all stationary hard surfaces and pin shells are no exception.
Resting gull on St George Island
Like the sandpipers this gull has found a depression to rest in, on the beach at St Geroge Island State Park.
Shelling beach at St George Island State Park
And one last look at the beach. This has been a wonderful day on St George Island State Park.
Until next time remember how good life is.
Mike & Joyce Hendrix
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Until next time remember how good life is.