“Captain Brian Holaway is well versed in the intricacies of our unmatched locale. He can guide to and through a multitude of out-of-the way tidal creeks, bayous, keys and islands. More important is his passionate interest and respect for the region. With unique insights from his many explorations and his studies, not only does he identify the birds and wildlife that inhabit our semi-tropical watery land, but he explains their interconnectedness to their environment and each other. In addition, he shares the fascinating history of rugged people who came long before us: Florida Native Indians, the Calusa, the Spanish, the Cubans, early homesteaders, and the wisdom evident in the growth of their culture.

You will come away with great enjoyment and a new understanding of this beautiful place and its history.”

Historian, Betty Anholt
Author of Sanibel’s Story

Saturday, April 30, 2011

Horse Conch



The wind has been blowing hard out of the south, southeast, then southwest for a number of days. I have been waiting for the gulf to calm down. Today it finally did. The shells were laying in the swash channels. You had to be patient and really look after the 3rd set of waves were finished rolling in. Then you had a brief amount of time to look quickly or scan quickly for shells. I noticed this horse conch in about 2 foot of water just beyond the swash channel. At first I thought it was a fighting conch. When I got closer I couldn't believe it was a horse conch. I have found very few this size and condition. I have found many smaller and a few much bigger. This was a exciting find. The horse conch is the Florida state shell. The world record Horse conch was found off Sanibel Island and is in the Sanibel shell museum.  I believe it was 26 inches long. Once while exploring the islands in the everglades I found the outsides of a broken horse conch that was huge. I knew it  had to be bigger than the one I saw in the Sanibel shell museum. Once the skeleton of the shell was safely in my garage, I broke out the tape measure...... 16 inches, not even close. That's all my horse conch stories for now. I need to remeasure that shell.

6 comments:

Kim@Snug Harbor said...

What is a swash channel? I've never heard that term. My daughter was saying today that she is really looking forward to hearing your nuggets of information on our cruise. She said she always learns something new from you.

Little Black Scrap Cat said...

Great horse conch. You've got me counting again.... 159 days!! Can't wait!

Capt. Brian Holaway said...

The swash channel is just behind where the shore meets the sea. The little dip by the shore is what I call the swash channel. I will show you when you get down here. The swash channel can be very productive for good shells if you take your time.

Capt. Brian Holaway said...

Glad you liked the horse conch. It was a cool find. You never know what the sea will throw your way.

Lee said...

That is a gorgeous Horse Conch. Has to be my favorite shell. Also love all your back porch collection.

Kelly said...

Very pretty horse conch. I have seen the one at the museum, fantastic! On iloveshelling blog there is a pic of me holding a 15 inch conch that I found at Honeymoon Island. People sometimes don't believe me when I say I found it. Definately my fav shell.