Should you pick up shells?

Palm Beach Gold Coast

While walking the beach at sunrise I found the perfect Helmet Shell. It was sitting on the wet sand glistening in the morning sun, the colours were so vibrant. I picked it up, not an imperfection anywhere. It looked like someone had dropped it, maybe it belongs to some child; perhaps they brought it down to the beach and forgot to take it home. But that didn’t make any sense it was sunrise and the tide was going out and there was no one around.

Suddenly out of nowhere came the same two seagulls that gave me a hard time 12 months back, and they acted exactly the same! They swooped over head and landed quite close and started their squawking, I was suddenly competition and they continued their racket. You have to watch these Seagulls in the early morning… maybe they are more aggressive before breakfast.
They both started pacing around me, I do like birds but hungry seagulls can be a problem. Around and around they walked, I glanced up to make sure their friends weren’t hanging around. That 1963 movie ‘The Birds’ scarred me for life with all those pecking birds it still sends shivers up my spine.

Seagull on the beach

The sky hadn’t darkened and there was still only two, pacing around so I was ok.
I had assumed that the shell was empty but judging from the attention I was getting it was clear that these birds thought otherwise.

Waiting Seagull
What should I do?

If I left it on the sand, these seagulls would turn it over and in no time be poking at it and prising the poor creature out for breakfast. My first thought was that it was empty, but if I took it home and it wasn’t I’d never forgive myself. I placed it in the sea to get some water inside and started up the beach for home and suddenly I felt a vibration a little knock. The snail was a alive! Back to the sea it goes.
Now I have a problem, I only have a girly throw, if I attempt to hurl it back into the ocean that poor creature will end up being washed back onto the beach with a severer headache after hitting the sand. I needed a strong throwing arm, but there was no one around.

Knight in Shining Armour

Suddenly out of the early morning light came my knight in shining armour…a guy jogging up the beach. Problem solved, I asked if he could throw the shell into deep water, because my throw was pathetic, he looked at me and said his wasn’t much better.

Man throws shell into sea
I handed him the shell and said “you have to be better than me”, grabbing hold of the helmet shell he looked down at it and said “nice shell’, he was very obliging and went well past the second line of breakers trying hard not to get wet and tossed the shell into deep water. (Hopefully)
Now I am under the impression that collecting shells is discouraged and there is a limit on how many you can pick up. I did a quick search to find out about shell collecting on Queensland beaches but nothing much came up.

If you have any information about this please leave a comment, or email me with the details.

2 Responses to Should you pick up shells?

  1. I have a rare Fan shell collection from New Zealand. I would like to know if anyone here can help me with a club of some sort.

Leave a reply