Best place to find seashells - Naples, Florida
Do you enjoy long walks along the beach at sunrise, sunset, or any time of the day? Whether the tide is coming in or going out, a leisurely walk along the beach is relaxing and a great way to enjoy what I call "the jewels of the gulf", the seashells.
Right there at our feet are some of the most beautiful and interesting sea animals and shells that the gulf has washed up on the beach for our enjoyment. I love to collect seashells by the sea shore and display them at home. The Naples beaches are a treasure trove for finding so many different types of sea shells, sea urchins, sand dollars, and starfish.
The western gulf side of Florida still offers charming seashell hunting that the east coast Atlantic Ocean side of Florida does not. Naples, Florida is one of the best places for finding unique and different types of shells, along with Sanibel Island and Captiva Island nearby. These three places are the sea shell hunting capital of Florida. So, lets take off at one of the Naples beaches for some seashell hunting right now.
Seashells like the ones pictured above are mollusks. Mollusks have their skeletons on the outside of their bodies for protection as opposed to humans whose skeletons are inside the body. The outside skeleton, which we call the shell, protects the living organism from the gulf (or sea) and other sea animals and is made of hard calcium. Inside the shell lives the soft fleshy slug-like creatures.
As you are walking along collecting your shells, when you find one with the slug-like creature still in the shell, that means the shell is alive. Don't pick it up to save. Leave the live shells on the beach to preserve and conserve the living organisms of the beach.
When hunting shells, only collect the shells that are dead - that means there is no longer a living slug-like creature in the shell. These are perfectly fine to pick up to save as you are not disturbing any live sea life.
Look at the texture and the colors of the seashell. Are they rough, smooth, grainy, or sandy feeling? All this is the result of the water and sand washing on the shell over a period of time. The colors are sometimes formed over many years of sea life and beach life. Each shell is a unique shape, form and color and no two shells are ever the same, just as no two people are ever the same.
Sand dollars are very popular on the Naples beaches and usually wash up on the beach in the month of June. Usually they are found lying in a bed buried under a layer of sand close to the water's edge so you have to look hard and dig for them. The sand dollar has no arms or legs, but moves around by tiny spines on their body that feel like a soft fur covering. If the spines are still on them, they are alive and I leave them in the sand.
They have the five tiny holes that resemble the position of Jesus Christ on the cross, and so the legend has it that when you break open a sand dollar there are five dove-like shaped pieces that fall out.
Therefore, the sand dollar, has become the symbol for Christ and the dove-like pieces, doves who spread good will and peace. But, to me, sand dollars are so beautiful and precious, I have a hard time breaking them open to get to the doves.
Starfish are very popular to the Naples beaches also. They are classified not as fish, but as animals. They are surprisingly quite voracious predators in the sea. We think of starfish that have five legs or points, but there are many variations and many variations in numbers and types of legs: the basket star has legs that resemble the roots of a tree; the brittle star has five thin legs but they are bent and curled; the sea star has nine legs or points; the sunflower star has a of legs or points and really does resemble a sunflower, the reason for its name.
If alive and moving when I find one on the beach I throw it back in the gulf. And, yes, I've heard the story of the man throwing one of many starfish back in the sea. Starfish are cooked and eaten and considered a delicacy. I've eaten starfish and it's not bad; however, I equate it like eating rabbit - it's difficult to eat such a beautiful and lovely creature.
Sea urchins are beautiful and come in a variety of colors. They have long spines rather than arms or legs. The spines are used for camouflage, locomotion, and for defensive purposes. They feed on sea grasses algae and have a close relationship to the starfish and sand dollar. Their underside near the middle has the familiar five pointed star pattern.
Cleaning and preserving seashells
Seashells not properly cleaned leave a devastatinng order. Properly cleaned, however, they will leave no odor. To properly clean your seashells find an old pot that you no longer use everyday for cooking. Fill the pan with 50/50 solution of bleach and water and boil them for about fifteen to thirty minutes. Be sure the the flaky leathery covering on the shell is gone before you take them out of the pot. Then lay them out on paper towels to dry outside in the sun if possible. They can then be used in the home or in crafts and will never smell again.
Sand dollars when found on the beach are a dark brown color. To clean them, soak them in fresh water first, changing the water frequently as they begin to smell and begin turning the water brown. Then, soak them in a solution of bleach and water and let them sit for 5-10 minutes. Then, remove them from the bleach, rinse them thoroughly and let them dry. Sand dollars will crumble if left in bleach for longer than 10 minutes. This is how you get the sand dollars white like the ones you see in the store.
Starfish are cleaned by soaking them in isopropl alcohol overnight. Then let them dry out on a paper towel, preferably outside in the sun. Be sure to weigh down the legs so they don't curl up as they dry.
Sanibel Island, FL
- Shelling on Sanibel Island, FL
Start your seashell collection by "shelling" on the pristine beaches of Sanibel Island, and learn to do the "Sanibel stoop."
- The Beaches of Naples, Florida
Don't miss the individual beaches along the seven miles of gorgeous white-sand beaches of Naples, Florida.
The Florida Keys
- The Florida Keys * laid-back and mellow
Come as you are to the Florida Keys!
Suzette Walker (author) from Taos, NM on August 25, 2016:
Thank you for reading this, Joy, and I am glad you enjoyed it. Your work at the Science Center sounds so interesting and you have left some very interesting comments. The study of shells and their inhabitants are of never ending interest.
JoyLevine from 3rd Rock from the Sun on July 19, 2016:
So beautiful the pictures of those shells! I remember working at a Science Center up north before moving down here and we had a book on seashells that was so interesting. Not only did it identify them, but explained a lot of the mathematical structure in them, Fibonacci and the like, and the importance it played in their structure and strength. Fascinating!
Suzette Walker (author) from Taos, NM on November 21, 2015:
Nellieanna: I am so glad you enjoyed reading this and thank you for stopping by. I guess I am a beach person and not a desert one. Actually, no I have not read Lindbergh's book so thank you for the recommendation. I am always looking for good books to read and this one sounds right up my alley.
Nellieanna Hay from TEXAS on November 11, 2015:
This is wonderful, Suzette. I love sea shells, but have never collected them myself in all my nearly 84 years! I've never walked on the beaches. Large bodies of water sort of terrify me. I'm more of a desert rat who's collected lots of great rocks and fossils. But shells are so beautiful, amazing and tell such stories! I've individual shells and bowls of them in my bathroom.
Are you familiar with Anne Morrow Lindbergh's "Gift From the Sea"? I'd guess that you likely are. I love the way she explores the beach, and sometimes with her daughter, they pick up shells together. She finds life lessons, relaxation, escape from the furious pace of life and even finds herself as she examines the shells and relates what she learns from each shell - in the loveliest, almost poetic ways.
Suzette Walker (author) from Taos, NM on November 03, 2015:
So glad you enjoyed my virtual beach walk! Thanks so much for reading!
sujaya venkatesh on November 01, 2015:
a nice beach walk
Suzette Walker (author) from Taos, NM on June 06, 2015:
EsJam: I have been to the CA beaches, but couldn't remember shells. That is why I inquired. Sounds like there area lot of conkel shells. I love the CA beaches and you are fortunate to live near them.
Essie from Southern California on May 28, 2015:
I don't really know much about shells, such as names, types, etc. I don't know about the beaches in San Diego county, it was the Orange county beaches I grew up with and am mostly familiar with. So Cal beaches have tons of pieces of shells in the sand. Mostly of the ones that look like a fan. The closer you are to the water, the more likely you will find whole mussel shells and lots of tulip type shells.
I recently moved closer to the central coast and have not had much of a chance to explore the shores yet. I'm planning on going this summer, I will get back to you on that!
Suzette Walker (author) from Taos, NM on May 28, 2015:
EsJam, So glad you enjoyed reading this. How are we the shells on the CA coastline? So glad to hear you found this helpful.
Essie from Southern California on May 27, 2015:
Oh my goodness, I had no idea! I've lived in California most of my life and never had a clue about the proper care. I'm glad I saw this! Nice hub!
Suzette Walker (author) from Taos, NM on February 10, 2015:
Paintdrips: I am a nature conservationist and do urge everyone to leave live shells on the beach or carefully put them back in the Gulf. I love the California coastline and have been fortunate to visit there several times. The California beaches are so lovely and beautiful.
So glad you enjoyed this virtual tour of Naples beaches.
Suzette Walker (author) from Taos, NM on February 10, 2015:
pstraubie48: I love Naples and it is such a beautiful spot. Every beach is so lovely and full of shells. I love shelling also and have seashells all around the house. I am so pleased you enjoyed reading this and enjoy Naples also. Perhaps we can meet some year in Naples.
Denise McGill from Fresno CA on January 31, 2015:
I love the practical advice here about leaving the live ones. I live in California and love to walk the beach (when I can get there) and collect shells but we hardly ever see live ones. This was and awesome walk on a new beach to me.
Patricia Scott from North Central Florida on January 30, 2015:
Naples is one of my most favorite places in Florida. I try to get down at least once a year. The shelling is amazing. I have many many unique ones from those beaches.
Venice Beach is great too for shark teeth.
Angels are on the way to you. ps
Suzette Walker (author) from Taos, NM on November 30, 2014:
peachpurple: Yes, starfish can be eaten. I ate starfish in Istanbul, Turkey and what an experience that was. I, like you, did not think one could eat starfish. I have to admit they are quite tasty but it is hard to eat them when thinking how beautiful they are in the sea. I do love collecting shells and the most beautiful of shells are in the Naples area. Thanks so much for reading and I am glad you enjoyed this.
Suzette Walker (author) from Taos, NM on November 30, 2014:
Jo: Thank you so much for reading this hub and I am glad you enjoyed it. Yes, the Naples, Ft. Meyers, Sanibel Island area is the best place to find shells in all of Florida. The shells here are plentiful and with so many varieties. In Naples, I have shells all over the place - here in Ohio my bathroom is done in shells. LOL! I love the intricacy of nature that shells represent.
peachy from Home Sweet Home on November 30, 2014:
i thought star fish couldn't be eaten. But your sea shell collection was awesome.
Jo_Goldsmith11 on November 29, 2014:
So very awesome to read! When I was little, I use to collect sea shells!
I was fortunate to briefly visit the N.Fort Myers Fla area one time.
I brought home a huge jar full of sea shells. Interesting read and useful to know how to clean them. And I appreciate what a blessing it is to read about how to preserve them! I just might have to start my sea shell collection again! Thank you. Shared and definitly up she goes! :-)
Suzette Walker (author) from Taos, NM on November 16, 2014:
cinderella: I am so pleased you enjoyed reading this and found it helpful. Unless shells are cleaned they give off an awful stench. Happy holiday at the beach this summer and enjoy! Thanks so much for your comments. Most appreciated.
Sharon Lopez from Philippines on November 15, 2014:
Thank you for sharing the proper way of cleaning shells. It is really helpful as I wanted to collect shells once we visit some beaches this coming summer. Have a great day!
Suzette Walker (author) from Taos, NM on November 02, 2014:
ladyguitarpicker: Naples is a great place to seek shells. There is such a variety to choose from. Naples is very warm right now and therefore, anytime to camp there is a good time. It is far south enough that it remains warm in the winter. Summers, of course, are steamy. It is a beautiful city with seven miles of beautiful beaches. And, the shells are to die for. Thanks so much for your visit and comments. Most appreciated.
Suzette Walker (author) from Taos, NM on November 02, 2014:
Theresa, thank you so much for reading this yet again. I am glad you enjoyed it and that it has lasting appeal. Snow in Georgia? You've got Ohio beat! LOL! We have had a lovey and warm fall, but today it did get cold, not enough to snow, but it was cold and rainy today. I think winter is not far behind. Thanks so much for your visit.
stella vadakin from 3460NW 50 St Bell, Fl32619 on November 01, 2014:
Hi great hub, I'll be down to Naples to look for shells as soon as it warms up a little , so I can camp. Naples is the best spot.
Theresa Ast from Atlanta, Georgia on November 01, 2014:
Wonderful 18 months ago. Still wonderful today. It snowed last night, October 31st, in North Georgia!! Clearly the world is coming to an end. lol Blessings!
Suzette Walker (author) from Taos, NM on October 30, 2014:
ahorseback (Ed) - thank you so much for reading this. I,too, was so surprised at the amounts of shells in Naples, Fl. and then on Sanibel Island. I have been to the New England shores, and you are so right about that. I think like you that shells must get pulvarized on the rocky shore. I grew up going to the Jersey shore and there are not many shells there either. I will say the the shells in FL. are on the Gulf side of the state. There are few shells on the east coast of Florida. I appreciate your visit and thanks for your visit.
ahorseback on October 30, 2014:
I have never seen more sea shells than in the south , here on the new England shores its the rocky shorelines I guess , that tend to pulverize the incoming shells , generally ground to bits ! I am always surprised to see so many people just exploring the shell life on the southern beaches . Keep on searching for the perfect shell !....Ed
Suzette Walker (author) from Taos, NM on October 29, 2014:
stricktlydating: Thank you so much and I am pleased you enjoyed reading this. Yes, do tell us about the shells in Australia. A hub about this, maybe? Thanks so much for stopping by and for your enthusiasm.
StrictlyQuotes from Australia on October 28, 2014:
What a cool topic! And great to be able to compare to our shells here in Australia.
Suzette Walker (author) from Taos, NM on October 21, 2014:
Easy Exercise: Thank you so much for reading this and for your insightful comments. I agree, nature is a wondrous miracle. The intricacy of seashells is amazing to me also and the number of different shells is almost infinite. I am so glad you enjoyed reading this and thanks so much for your visit.
Kelly A Burnett from United States on October 20, 2014:
There are so many miracles in the world - from exotic fish to exotic birds to colorful fall leaves not to mention magical sun sets. Yet, a sea shell is a tiny miracle, a miracle of various shapes, textures and colors and a miracle we can hold in our hand. Truly a celebration of love of the sea and a tribute to the many wonders of God.
Suzette Walker (author) from Taos, NM on September 14, 2014:
PhoenixV: I am sure you have found some lovely shells along the Gulf Coast. Naples and Sanibel Island have the best in my opinion. I have been to Key West but I can't remember the seashells there right now. I love the shells and there are so much to do with them!
PhoenixV from USA on September 07, 2014:
I like collecting seashells whenever I have had a chance to visit the ocean. I have been to Padre Island, north and south and along the Gulf Coast and all the way to Key West. They are not as easy to find as I thought. If I am ever near Naples I will look for them.
Suzette Walker (author) from Taos, NM on August 30, 2014:
lilsln: Shell hunting is one of my favorite past times. You cannot imagine how many sea shells I have from the Naples/Sanibel region. They are particularly beautiful and there are so many of them for the picking. That idea of putting them under a glass top table is such a great way to show them off and a wonderful idea. Thanks so much for your visit.
LorLinda from Denver Colorado on August 27, 2014:
I love seas shells they are beautiful to collect. I have never had the chance to collect them in Florida but I have some that I would put under a glass table top that would make a nice touch to any room. What an interesting topic to share with all of us thank you.
Suzette Walker (author) from Taos, NM on July 16, 2014:
Jackie: I just love sea shells also for the same reasons. So much can be done and made with them. They are such a pleasant reminder of the sea to have around the house. I am so pleased you enjoyed reading this. Thanks so much for your input.
Jackie Lynnley from the beautiful south on July 15, 2014:
I absolutely love sea shells and all things made from them. I have so many souvenirs made from them. I love the earrings especially and just can never find those tiny delicate ones! Great article!
Suzette Walker (author) from Taos, NM on June 30, 2014:
Denise, I am so glad you returned here and enjoyed it so. I bet you had fun collecting shells with your granddaughter. What a fun activity to share with her. Living near the ocean, I am sure you have known for a while how to take care of shells. LOL! Yes, this is a beginner's guide to shell collecting. Thanks so much and I am pleased you have enjoyed this more than once. What wonderful memories you have given your granddaughter.
Denise Handlon from North Carolina on June 28, 2014:
Had to return to this hub, Suzanne. I just finished a visit to Nags Head, NC with my daughter and her family. My granddaughter and I spent sometime beach combing and had a good time. This is a great hub to help someone who is new to the seashell selection.
Suzette Walker (author) from Taos, NM on June 27, 2014:
susi10: Thank you so much for your lovely comments and I agree with all of them! LOL! I love shelling on the Naples beaches because of the variety of shells found there. And there are so many. June is the month for sand dollars. They are all over the beaches right now and are fun to find and bleach to white. (They are originally brown) Thanks so much for your visit and comments. Most appreciated.
Susan W from The British Isles, Europe on June 25, 2014:
Sea shells are beautiful and this hub really captured their spirit. They are so natural and picking one up always guarantees satisfaction! The sea shells in Naples look very nice indeed, I have never seen the sand dollar before. Great hub, and educational too! Shared and voted beautiful.
Suzette Walker (author) from Taos, NM on June 25, 2014:
joedolphin88: Yes, Miami has a little more spark and pep to it!
Joe from north miami FL on June 24, 2014:
Yes, I can absolutely see retiring there.
Suzette Walker (author) from Taos, NM on June 24, 2014:
joedolpin: Yes, Miami is a much hipper place than Naples! I have been to South Beach. Naples is laid-back and mellow. Great for retirement!
Joe from north miami FL on June 23, 2014:
Absolutely, and yes Miami definitely wins overall but to visit Naples is wonderful.
Suzette Walker (author) from Taos, NM on June 23, 2014:
Torrs13: Isn't nature wonderful and can be such a mystery. So you broke open a sand dollar and saw the doves. Wonderful! I love the shells on the Naples' beaches - they are the best. I am so glad you enjoyed reading this and that makes me happy. Thanks so much for your visit and comments.
Tori Canonge from North Carolina on June 23, 2014:
I haven't been to the beach in awhile but I enjoy picking up seashells and looking at all the different patterns, textures, and colors. I remember getting a sand dollar as a child and seeing the doves that were inside. Nature is a beautiful thing!
Suzette Walker (author) from Taos, NM on June 06, 2014:
joedolphin88: Cool! I hope you enjoyed your time at FGCU! Yes, the Naples Beaches are beautiful and the shelling is terrific. But, being in north Miami isn't bad either. LOL! Thanks so much for your input and taking the time to read this.
Joe from north miami FL on June 06, 2014:
Went to Florida Gulf Coast University and I can say driving down to Naples I saw some of the most beautiful shells I'd ever seen. The beach there is very calm and relaxing. I collected shells with my nephew and found him some great ones.
Suzette Walker (author) from Taos, NM on May 05, 2014:
Thanks so much, Nell! I like to keep a low profile when it comes to birthdays. I am getting up there and I'm at the point of wanting to forget them. I remember the birthday but not the number! LOL!
Suzette Walker (author) from Taos, NM on May 05, 2014:
jtrader: So glad this was helpful to you and you enjoyed reading it. I love collecting shells to display around the house. They are beautiful aren't they? Thanks so much for your comments.. Most appreciated.
Nell Rose from England on May 03, 2014:
Happy Birthday! lol! thought we had forgotten? oh no!
jtrader on May 03, 2014:
Thanks for the tips- I love collecting seashells and making jewelry with them too.
Suzette Walker (author) from Taos, NM on March 10, 2014:
Availiasvision: I never get bored looking at and for shells on the Naples beaches. They are beautiful and unique. Each one different - like snowflakes. Bleach works for me and does get the smell out of the shells. I never have them around the house until I have bleached them. So glad you enjoyed reading this and I appreciate your visit.
Jennifer Arnett from California on March 04, 2014:
You're making me want to go to sunny Florida. I never knew how to get the smell out of the shells. One more thing bleach is good for. Thanks!
Suzette Walker (author) from Taos, NM on January 18, 2014:
DDE: Thanks so much for reading this and commenting. I appreciate your comments.
Devika Primić from Dubrovnik, Croatia on January 18, 2014:
Seashells by the Seashore - Naples, Florida is a beautifully presented hub and I like picking shells.
Suzette Walker (author) from Taos, NM on January 16, 2014:
ologsinquito: It is beautiful. I hope you get there too soon. Thanks so much for your visit and for reading this.
ologsinquito from USA on January 14, 2014:
Naples, Florida must be lovely. I'd like to visit someday.
Suzette Walker (author) from Taos, NM on December 02, 2013:
rebecca: Glad you enjoyed this. Yes, beach combing is fun and you can sometimes find more than shells! LOL Thanks so much for reading and your comments.
Rebecca Mealey from Northeastern Georgia, USA on December 02, 2013:
I love combing the beach for stuff. Thanks for sharing your knowledge, a unique hub!
Suzette Walker (author) from Taos, NM on October 14, 2013:
Eileen: Thank you so much for reading this and I am glad you enjoyed it. I love to hunt for sea shells and Naples is the perfect place for it. You are much craftier than I am with the shells but I also enjoy walking along the beach. Great exercise and you never know what you will find.
Eileen Hughes from Northam Western Australia on October 13, 2013:
I love collecting seashells and making things with them like picture frames and wreaths etc. Plus collecting them gets you out walking in the fresh air.
Suzette Walker (author) from Taos, NM on September 12, 2013:
Denise: Thank you so much for reading this and for your comments. I love shelling and never tire of the unique shells found on the beaches of Naples. Thanks for the link also. I will read your hub and link yours to mine.
Denise Handlon from North Carolina on September 11, 2013:
Awesome hub, Suzette. I love shells and beach combing for them. In fact, I wrote a hub about them and will link yours to mine. Rated UP/U/I/A and shared.
Suzette Walker (author) from Taos, NM on August 10, 2013:
Leslie: You and me both! Early morning is my favorite time for walking the beach and collecting shells. So glad you get to Myrtle Beach - so nice that you live close. Thanks so much for reading this and for your comments. Most appreciated.
Leslie from South Carolina on August 09, 2013:
Like many of the others, I love picking up seashells. My family and I live close to Myrtle Beach, SC and we make several trips each summer...my favorite thing to do is walk on the beach in the mornings and collect shells. I really enjoyed the hub :)
Suzette Walker (author) from Taos, NM on July 28, 2013:
creativeaqua: I am lucky you have stopped by to read this! Thanks so much for your comments - they are much appreciated. This area of SW Florida is great for shell hunting. I have found so many different kinds and they are in large quantities.
Yorja Rahmani from India on July 25, 2013:
Beautiful shells. I love to collect seashells and go hunting for them when near the oceans. They have such a positive vibe to them. I also beleive them to be lucky.
Harriette Schwartz from Fresno on June 20, 2013:
Suzettennaples I am quite new to Hubpages but was attracted to the lovely photos of shells and your post..an excellent and informative piece. Thanks for this post. Harriette
Suzette Walker (author) from Taos, NM on June 16, 2013:
Thank you Sanjay. Yes, it is a tongue twister in English all right. Thank you so much for reading this and for your kind comments. I appreciate your visits.
Sanjay Sharma from Mandi (HP) India on June 16, 2013:
There is a tongue twister, which my daughter loves, i. e.,
" She sells sea shells at the seashore."
Suzette Walker (author) from Taos, NM on June 03, 2013:
Romeo: I just love shelling in the Naples/Sanibel Island region of Florida. The shells there are just exquisite. So you grew up by the ocean also. You and your sister must have had quite the shell collections by the sounds of it. Thank you so much for your thoughtful comments. I hope you had a wonderful weekend as well and thanks so much for your visit - most appreciated.
Romeos Quill from Lincolnshire, England on June 01, 2013:
Thank you for a lovely, educational Hub.They are fascinating, are they not, with their shapes, colours, textures and myriad designs?
They captured my imagination in childhood, as my baby sister and I strolled along the beaches of the east-coast of England, with bucket and spade, ambling through what seemed to be, never-ending summer days, collecting these gems, relinquished by a generous sea, and loved to see them ornately dress little storage boxes, that made the ordinary look magical, as they were glued all around the outside, transforming the functional, into a wonderful looking treasure chest that begged to be opened.
Have a marvelous weekend.
Suzette Walker (author) from Taos, NM on May 21, 2013:
bookandetccritic: Glad you also enjoy long walks along the beach. I have seen both starfish and sand dollars on the Naples beaches. Probably because I hang out there so much. Which coast are you on? I have found the west coast to be the best for shelling. The sand dollars don't hit the beach until June and that is the best month for finding sand dollars. So by next week sometime, they should be coming out on the beaches on the west coast. And, yes, starfish can be cooked and eaten or they can be collected for your home. Which ever you prefer. Thanks so much for visiting and for your comments. Most appreciated.
Crystie Kendal from statesville on May 21, 2013:
Yes, I enjoy long walks along the beach and it doesn't matter what time of day, because long walks along the beach are relaxing.
Now, you have my interest. I'd like to see a starfish in Naples, F.L.
Your article has made me intrigued to find seashells, without snails in them.
I have never seen a sand dollar. Aint that funny? Being that I am from Florida?
Wow, now, I want a sand dollar!
I'm saddened to hear that starfishes are cook and eaten :(
Suzette Walker (author) from Taos, NM on May 04, 2013:
Eddy: Hi, I haven't seen you lately and have missed you. Glad to see your are back. Thank you so much for reading and commenting. This is one of my favorite hubs! Thanks so much for your interest. Most appreciated.
Suzette Walker (author) from Taos, NM on May 04, 2013:
sgbrown: Yes, I believe in leaving the live shellfish alone and letting them live out their natural lives. I only condone taking the empty or dead shells off the beach. That way we conserve the sea life. The shells are particularly beautiful on the west coast of Florida and it is fun to collect them - there are so many varieties out there. Thank you so much for reading this and for your comments. Most appreciated.
Eiddwen from Wales on May 04, 2013:
Whata wonderful hub;I loved it and vote up.Enjoy your weekend Suzette.
Sheila Brown from Southern Oklahoma on May 04, 2013:
What an interesting hub! I really enjoyed this and learned something new too! I didn't know that if the sand dollar has "hairs" on it that it is still alive. Very good to know as I wouldn't want to take a living sand dollar. I have only been to a beach a few times, but I loved collecting shells. You have a lot of really good information here! Voted up, useful, interesting and pinning! :)
Suzette Walker (author) from Taos, NM on May 04, 2013:
mary: Glad you enjoyed this. I must say the shells are better on the west than the east coast of Florida. I don't know why that is except that maybe because the ocean is on the east and the Gulf is on the west. I love sand dollars too. I have seen some but not a lot of those. It is a real treasure to find a sand dollar I think. Forgive me please, but I won't be reading your hub on the python roundup - I just can't stand snakes and seeing or reading about them will give me snake nightmares. I hope you understand. Thank you so much for reading and for your comments - most appreciated.
Mary Hyatt from Florida on May 03, 2013:
I really enjoyed this Hub. I live on the other coast of Fl. and we can find some beautiful shells here too, if we are lucky.
I think my favorite is the sand dollar....
BTW: I am delighted to see my Hub on the Python Roundup in the Everglades is a related one to this one of yours.
Voted UP and shared.
Suzette Walker (author) from Taos, NM on May 01, 2013:
Rfordin: I know, isn't it beautiful on the west coast? It has a whole different feel and atmosphere from the east coast. I'm so glad you enjoyed this hub. Thanks for visiting and for your comments. Most appreciated.
Rfordin from Florida on May 01, 2013:
We love visiting the west coast. We usually visit Ft. Myers Beach and stay on the gulf of Mexico once a summer (were not to, to far).
The sandbars, seashells, starfish and sunsets (Oh my) seem to trump the east coast tremendously.
Thanks for sharing. We love it there.
Suzette Walker (author) from Taos, NM on April 27, 2013:
pstraubie48: Isn't this area of Florida the best? I just love all these places and they truly are the best places for shelling. I don't know what happened to the rest of Florida, but the sea animals and shells seem to have gravitated here. So glad you have experienced this bit of Florida and enjoyed reading this. Thanks so much for your visit and your comments.
Patricia Scott from North Central Florida on April 26, 2013:
LOVE LOVE LOVE going to Naples, Sanibel, and Captiva....have spent many vacas and mini-vacas there. Shelling is so much fun...a new find every day.
Thanks so much for sharing this gem with others.
Angels are on the way :) ps
Suzette Walker (author) from Taos, NM on April 14, 2013:
Theresa: So glad you enjoyed this and that it brought back such lovely memories for you. So your father swam in the Gulf and other seas and oceans. How great is that and I'm so glad you had the 'ocean collection' in your home. Sounds beautiful and then you did that with your sons. What a great mom! You must be a lot of fun. Thanks so much for reading this - actually it is one of my first hubs and one of my favorites!
Theresa Ast from Atlanta, Georgia on April 13, 2013:
Oh, suzette - You have written about one of the great loves of my life. :) My father was a great swimmer (Gulf of Mexico, Georgia, Greece, Northern California, and the Philippines). He was always finding and bringing home the discarded shells of sea creatures - soon we learned to do the same.
We always had a "ocean - nature" display somewhere in our house - various kinds of coral, sand dollars, starfish and amazingly colored sea urchins (from the Aegean Sea) and all manner of shells. When I got married I started a collection for my three boys and of course they contributed to it. Eventually, I spread our treasures out across the bottom shelf of a lighted, glass sided china cabinet. They were our pride and joy for years and years.
This is such a great hub, the pictures are wonderful and how terrific that you provided the detailed directions about how to treat them to render them odorless. I can imagine you searching for seashells, the wind blowing and the blue sea in the background -- a lovely image. Theresa
Suzette Walker (author) from Taos, NM on April 06, 2013:
Audrey: Thank you for reading and commenting. I have enjoyed your visit. I never tire of seashells because each one is unique. I love collecting them. I am so glad you enjoyed this and that it brought back good memories for you.
Audrey Howitt from California on April 06, 2013:
I have always loved looking for seashells--we grew up by the beach in CA--and it was a favorite pastime growing up--great hub!
Suzette Walker (author) from Taos, NM on March 24, 2013:
FullofLoveSites: Aren't they delightful? I love shells, natures' 'jewels'. I am so glad you enjoyed this. Thanks for stopping by to view and read.
FullOfLoveSites from United States on March 24, 2013:
Those shells are a delight to look at, they come in different forms and sizes, and each of them has its own unique beauty. Thanks for posting! :)
Suzette Walker (author) from Taos, NM on March 22, 2013:
tebo: Thank you for stopping by to read and view this hub. I'm so glad you enjoyed it. Naples is particularly beautiful and Sanibel Island is another great place to go 'shelling.'
tebo from New Zealand on March 22, 2013:
What an interesting article about shells. It sounds like you have a beautiful place to find your shells. I have been to Florida many years ago, but don't recall going to Naples. Nice hub.
Gustave Kilthau from USA on January 20, 2013:
Suzette (suzettenaples) - This was an enjoyable article. Shells are really nifty things - lots of colors and plenty of patterns. Your choice of photos brought that out, too. Thanks.
Jackie Lynnley from the beautiful south on January 08, 2013:
I love seashells and St Augustine is where I collected most of mine. I still have hordes with big plans, lol. Great hub!
Suzette Walker (author) from Taos, NM on November 05, 2012:
Thanks, alocsin. The seashells here are beautiful. I'm sorry to hear that they aren't on the west coast. Thanks for reading and for your comments - most appreciated!
Aurelio Locsin from Orange County, CA on November 02, 2012:
You're lucky to have a source for free seashells. There's nothing like that here in Southern California. Voting this Up and Interesting.
Suzette Walker (author) from Taos, NM on October 19, 2012:
Thank you and thank you for reading this! I can't get over the beautiful sea shells in Naples. They are the most beautiful I have seen anywhere. This was so fun to write because I, too, love to collect shells. Thanks for stopping by to visit - most appreciated!
Rajan Singh Jolly from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar, INDIA. on October 18, 2012:
Your first picture bowled me over. It is a very pretty collection of seashells. I've always been enamored by sea shells having regularly collected them whenever I happened to visit the beach as a child.
Very interesting hub, one I thoroughly enjoyed.
Voted up, interesting and awesome. Sharing it.
Suzette Walker (author) from Taos, NM on October 01, 2012:
Docmo: Thanks you so much for reading. I'm glad you enjoyed this. Seashells are beautiful but I have never seen any from India. I bet they are beautiful too and unusual. You will also find seashell sculptures in Naples, also. So glad this brought back good memories for you. Thanks for visiting and your comments are appreciated!