Bald Head Island Fall Hunt & Gather

Sunday, November 3, 2013


I love Bald Head every time of year.  But, it is especially nice in the fall.  It's cooler and there are less people here, which makes it feel almost like your own personal island more so than in the summer.  I had the perfect Bald Head day yesterday.  Since it was my first full day here, I decided that I needed to scope out all the beaches for the best shells.  I hit every beach, even running north on East Beach for a couple miles to see what was up there.

While the shelling isn't at it's best, there are some great finds.  And, after the thunderstorm on Friday and the new moon tonight, I'm hoping by tomorrow or Tuesday the good stuff will be out there waiting on me.




East Beach Horseshoe Crab

South Beach Coral

West Beach One-Tooth Simnia

West Beach Barnacle
Gorgeous 10 pointer on South Bald Head Wynd
Sunset
Sunset


Cheers,
Margaret

Fall Hunt and Gather on Waites Island, SC

Monday, October 28, 2013

I've been working really hard.  And, sometimes when I'm in a groove, it's hard to get me out of the office.  I'm so glad the boyfriend did.  It was maybe the prettiest day this fall, and being out on the water and visiting a barrier island for the afternoon was just what I needed to get refreshed and ready for another week.  Very great day shelling; lots of  interesting goodies washed up.

Starfish

Banded Tulip

Dancing Starfish

Calico Crab with some kind of parasite that was growing on the shell.

Channeled Whelks

Carcass of some unknown animal...kind of gross, but of course I was intrigued.

Florida Wormtail


Calico Crab Shell

Cherry Grove Sunset
Cheers!
Margaret

Casually Chic featuring the Horseshoe Crab Scarf

Friday, October 25, 2013







Casually Chic
I feel like I am always able to find something to pair my scarves with, but Polyvore gives me the opportunity to think of new ways.  I love this outfit featuring the Horseshoe Crab Scarf.  If I can picture myself wearing this outfit does it mean it really happened?  That is, without having to buy it all.

Cheers,
Margaret



Great White Shark back in North Carolina

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Holy sh*t.  I know I shouldn't be that surprised that Mary Lee, the 16 foot long, 3,456 lb Great White Shark who visited New Hanover County last year, is back, this area is lovely.  But, I am.  She was off the coast of Wrightsville Beach just on Sunday.  If you want to freak yourself out, you can follow her here..  Right now she is off the coast of Carolina Beach. 

Check out the article, with some incredible pictures of this gorgeous animal that may or may not give you heart palpitations here.


Photo Courtesy: OCEARCH
Mary Lee - credit OCEARCH
Cheers,
Margaret

Menhaden

Monday, October 21, 2013

Menhaden is a word that has been in my vocabulary even before I knew what having a vocabulary meant.  I used to go with my Dad to catch menhaden for his trips offshore growing up.  I remember seeing loads of these schools of shiny fish when I was younger.  Not so much any longer, at least not in the creeks and channels where they used to be plentiful.  My theory is that the flood of hurricanes the Wrightsville Beach area had in the late 90s disrupted the normal menhaden migration.

Two years ago, fishing at low tide on a shoal at Cape Fear, I experienced one of the coolest marine events involving menhaden.  We were catching pigfish and whiting, so our focus was narrowed.  That is until we could hear the menhaden approaching.  It took some time for the 200 yard school of menhaden to reach us, and even longer for them to move south along Frying Pan Shoals.  But, those 30 minutes were ones I will never forget.  I just wish I had it all on camera.  It was if the menhaden planned on giving us a show of our lifetime.  My sister, my friend with her young son, had just arrived on the shoal to shell, when the shark show started.  The menhaden were popping along the surface when the shark fins starting shooting through them, sometimes jumping out of the sea.  I think a tarpon even got in on the fun.  I managed to film a small bit, it doesn't do it justice - but, you can see the menhaden.  You never know what you will witness hunting and gathering along the coast.  It's better than any TV show or film you pay money to watch.

video

Recently, while shelling on Masonboro Island, I came across another school of menhaden.  Hoping for another shark attack, I filmed for a bit.  But, I only captured the action of the school swimming in the breakers.  Maybe next time.






Happy hunting and gathering!
Cheers,
Margaret

Bird Island Hunt and Gather

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Last week I was determined to find sand dollars.  And, low tide was nice enough to come early in the morning.  I was so determined that I woke up wide eyed at 4:45 a.m.  Patiently waiting until the sun came up, I did a little work before combing the beach.  And, because of the cloudy weather, I was the only one walking towards the Little River Inlet Jetty on Bird Island. 

This Sand Dollar had a suction animal on it.  I removed it, but I think that's why it's discolored.

Gorgeous cloudy morning.

Bird Island Reserve

Calico Crab Shell

Sand Dollar

Baby Sand Dollar

Sand Dollar
Mornings like this are the best way to start the day.  The feeling of having an island to yourself is almost heavenly, and then to find these treasures just laying on the ground is joyful.  If you see me on the beach talking to my gems, just ignore me.  I already know I'm slightly crazy.

Cheers!
Margaret

Masonboro Island Hunt and Gather

Sunday, October 13, 2013








Horseshoe Crabs and Whelk Egg Case

Horseshoe Crabs and Whelk Egg Case

Keyhole Limpet

Keyhole Limpet

Keyhole Limpets

Masonboro Inlet

Lettered Olive

Star Coral

Jetty Minnows

Keyhole Limpet

Scallop

Masonboro Island, beach side; surfers are the black dots in the water.

Lightning Whelk

Largest Keyhole Limpet I've ever found.
Happy Shelling!

Cheers,
Margaret

Little River and Bird Island Adventure

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Today was the perfect boat day, and because I am a self-employed entrepreneur - modern day hunter and gatherer with dreams of being a hermit, I could enjoy it.  On my new boat.  Well, it's my boat and the boyfriend's boat, but in essence, that means it's mine.

We took the boat down the Intracoastal Waterway through Little River, exploring the channels along the way to Little River Inlet, and the ocean, ending with a shell at Bird Island.  I haven't felt more like my true self in months than I did on that boat today.  And, that my friends, feels very good.

Bird Island is on the southern end of Sunset Beach, NC, and is a North Carolina Coastal Reserve and National Estuarine Research Reserve.  Basically, that means it's a undeveloped barrier island.  And, that puts it on my list for favorite places to visit and shell.

Bird Island was littered with broken sand dollars.  I managed to find some gems, and despite seeing so many broken ones, I enjoyed myself thoroughly.

Little River Waterfront from the Intracoastal Waterway
 
Shrimp Boat in Little River Inlet

Little River Buoy

Bird Island Crab hiding in the sand around the jetty

Bird Island Sand Dollar

Bird Island Sand Dollar

Bird Island Sand Dollar

Bird Island Sand Dollar

Bird Island Sea Oats
The weather is perfect for hunting and gathering.  I hope you can hunt and gather soon too!

Cheers,
Margaret

Waites Island Hunt and Gather

Monday, September 30, 2013

Even though the end of summer can send me into a mild depression; it doesn't last too long.  Fall on the coast is the best you can get.  The shelling is incredible, there is a plethora of bait in the water, the fishing is unheard of, and most of the tourists have headed back inland (poor things).  To top it off, my boyfriend and I just bough a boat, and a trailer, and a truck.  So, I am sittin' pretty, or hunting and gathering pretty.  We had an awesome day out yesterday! 

We went straight for Waites Island, which is the northern most barrier island in the state of SC.  And, it is beautiful!

Waites Ariel Shot (Cherry Grove Inlet left, Little River Inlet Right)
Waites Island and beautiful Pine Trees

Waites Island, SC

I love having an island all to myself. (I took this picture last week, obviously it's low tide in this photo.

Catching bait along the way was easy.  Once we arrived, I was off to the races while the boyfriend fished.  And, even though it was high tide, the shelling was great!

Tiny Sand Dollar

Thick-Lip Drills and Odostomes

Baby's Ear

Channeled Whelk

Channeled Whelks

Star Coral

Crab Shells

Keyhole Limpets
I hope you all can hunt and gather during this lovely fall season.

Cheers!
Margaret

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