Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Wednesday and Sanibel Shells

(An interesting article about those starfish we've been seeing on the beach this week.)

We had another cool night here, the low reaching 52. It warmed up nicely today and was 73 by mid afternoon. The sun was shining and the beach was calling. :) Resident access 7 off West Gulf Drive, to be exact. There were a few shells scattered all along the beach and in some areas there were more. I didn't find anything great, except one fan shell we found, which is probably my favorite shell. After walking from access 7 east, we turned around and walked back toward the west for a long way. I had worked up a sweat before getting back and was really tired. I hadn't walked that far, for a long time.

There were several tracks, that made me think the city had been cleaning up the dead fish.

Several days ago I had photos of this drop off when it was 3 or 4 ft. It's mostly filled in with sand again. I'm always amazed at how different the beach can look from one day to another.

Some of you are familiar with what we called the Osprey House, I had been told that it was torn down. But, here it is, with some young osprey still hanging out on their tree. The house does look vacant.

There is a new home being built right next to Osprey House. A very beautiful home!

Shells that I carried home in my pocket. :) I think there could be a whole book written on why each person finds different kinds of shells appealing.

This video was taken about a mile west of the access path. The beach in that area was deserted :)

On the 16th, I mentioned that the Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission had issued new emergency fishing rules. More explanation was sent out today from the City of Sanibel, which includes a link to the FFW site.

Sanibel, Florida - January 20, 2010
Contact: City of Sanibel Natural Resources Department (239) 472- 3700
State of Florida Releases Emergency Fishing Rules to Protect Species Impacted by Record Cold Temperatures

Following the recent cold weather of unusual duration, the water temperatures in the waters of Pine Island Sound dropped into the upper 40 degrees Fahrenheit and the Gulf temperature was in the low 50's F. These temperatures are too cold for the non-migratory tropical snook which is at the northernmost part of its range in south Florida.

Extended periods of low water temperature cause snook to at first behave lethargically and become disoriented and eventually they become immobile and their organ systems shut down. Tens of thousands of snook have been reported killed on both the Atlantic and Gulf coasts as a result of this event and the State Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission has issued an emergency order to extend the current winter closure of snook harvest until September 1st. Harvest of tarpon and bonefish, which were also adversely affected by the cold, is also closed under the same emergency order until March 31st. Here is the text of the State news release: _X_ColdWeatherSaltFishKills1.htm


Little Black Scrap Cat said...

I hope you know how much I(we) appreciate your consistent blogging!! Everyone who thinks of AZ assumes that we are fat and happy and WARM here. But it's NOT warm here right now!! And we certainly don't have any beaches (other than the edges of man-made lakes!) I do so love your pics and post!! Thanks, Tootie!! Hoping to get back there again next October!!

Maria Vincent said...

I love hearing where you are on the beach - I check my map to see where you are finding your shells! Do the authorities know how long the effects of the cold temps will last? Will the wildlife continue to be affected even after the sea warms up? Are you seeing more birds on the beach now? I hate it when the wildlife is affected - I'm keeping my fingers crossed it improves for them soon.

tldunnivant said...

I agree with the Little Black Scrap Cat, Tootie. And I especially like when you go to Access 7 and I can see "my" part of the beach. The Osprey House is one of the landmarks for me when I'm strolling out from the Blue Dolphin. Looking forward to returning in May.