Immerse in an ECO-Tour and Experience Southwest Florida Islands by Boat

“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

Friday, April 27, 2012

Calm Seas

The water on the out islands today was stunning.

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Captain Brian's Finds Of The Week

The wind last weekend blew extremely hard out of the west and northwest. Some gusts at Boca Grande were up to 60 mph. The gulf was a mess. The high winds brought in many shells. It can take a few days for things to settle down. When it does and the seas are calm, is when the shelling can be really good. The trough where the shore meets the sea is loaded with shells.  I am looking forward to exploring the trough on my favorite beach for the next three days. I was very excited to find a Scotch Bonnet, a piece of Junonia and even more excited to find a piece of a Helmet Shell. I found a piece of a Helmet Shell 16 years ago, ironically in the same spot. The sea never ceases to amaze me. The power of the surf is tantalizing. However, I was thinking different thoughts while out in the middle of this wind. Just me and Van Morrison, who was singing me "Into The Mystic".

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Heavy Surf On Cayo

The beauty of the island is always changing.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Excellent Young Shellers

Shellers come from all over and many different ages in search of their favorite seashells. I was most impressed with the grandchildren of Pat and children of Jen. Ben has collected over 70 Wenteltraps. He has only been shelling for two years. On this trip he found three. Ben said, "I don't find Wentletraps they find me." He told me about the different types of Wentletraps and was pleased to find a Tusk shell. He was also more than elated to find a small sand dollar. Grandma had all the special containers to put them in. Izzy was also an amazing sheller. She knew the Coquinas and talked about Rose Tellins. The knowledge Ben and Izzy possessed about shells was inspiring. It was a great pleasure to listen and learn from two excellent young shellers. Thank you Ben and Izzy.

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Captain Brian Graduates From The Florida Master Naturalist Program

Today I am proud to say that I completed the University of Florida Master Naturalist Program.  This program consists of three modules - Coastal Systems, Upland Habitats and Wetland Systems.  Each module is 40 contact hours including field trips, interpretive talks in the field and classroom work.  I chose to do a plant field guide for my final project.  You can see the field guide in the pictures above.  I am relieved to have this behind me, now it's time to RELAX and EXPLORE!

Friday, April 13, 2012

Carolina Family

I enjoyed  the company of Rita, Shawn, Jen, Christopher, Jacob, and Micheal. The family has been shelling in Southwest Florida for over 20 years. We explored the back country and observed many live shells. We found some excellent shells that were unoccupied. Jen found a nice Lighting whelk and many Olives. Other shells found were Kings Crowns, Gaudia Nautica, Worm shells, Tusk shells, Cockles, Angel Wings, Scallops, Key Hole Limpets, Fighting conchs, Turkey wings and Top shells. The kids had a great time catching fiddler crabs, grandma loved the whole experience. It was a fun day on the water with a very nice family from the Carolina's.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Skies And Driftwood

Sometimes the sky and driftwood speak words I can not find.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Photography And Shelling with Charlie and Louise

I enjoyed the company of Louise and Charlie on our adventure to the out Islands. Charlie took some great shots of the Osprey and shore birds. Louise and I walked and talked about different shell finds and adventures. I look forward to taking both Louise and Charlie out in the fall. Thank you for a very insightful trip.

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Camera Club

Members of the Fort Myers Camera Club traveled with me to the historic fish houses. The weather was absolutely perfect for photography.  We even had a few nice white clouds over the out islands that made a perfect back drop through the lens. The photographers also captured some great Osprey photos. Great conversations were enjoyed and many photos taken. It was a great day on the water.