Feature Creature: Strombus alatus

Strombus alatus

This overturned conch is looking in two different directs. In early August, I was walking in the shallows at Big Carlos Pass, enjoying the calm morning water with an exceptionally low tide. It was one of those still mornings that can fool you into believing that there’s nothing new or …

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Plant Profile: Caesalpinia bonduc, what’s it good for?

Empty Knicker Bean Pods

  I was recently walking along a local beach, when I spotted a happy couple harvesting the smooth, grey beans from a Caesalpinia bonduc.  These sea beans, sometimes known as “sea pearls” or “eaglestones,” can be quite attractive and are occasionally used in crafts.  There was nothing creative in my …

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Florida Survival: Lightning

Growing Cloud

Summer is Florida’s true rainy season and the skies can be remarkably beautiful.  White clouds can almost always be seen floating against a backdrop of clean blue.  One can often watch the tops of the clouds boil and roll as they swell with gathering moisture, building through the heat of …

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Tide In, Tide Out: Life Among Flotsom

Leaf Fish

Water streams past you, pulled by the tide. Flowing along side the shore, it carries with it whatever floats or is lightweight and unanchored. Natural flotsam casually passes by, a collection of mangrove seeds, fallen sea grape and mangrove leaves, a sea bean or two, random loose sea grasses and …

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Feature Creature: Grey Wart Anemone

Grey Wart Anamone

What is that?  It’s a beached sea anemone (Anthopleura carneola / Anthopleura krebsi). Despite being named after the anemone garden flower, sea anemones are actually animals related to jellyfish and corals.  Anemones are almost always benthic, meaning that they live on the ocean floor.  They are predatory with a diet …

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