By Jenny Edwards
Watch your step when you walk along a local beach. You could be treading on some rare and fascinating shells, especially as many of them are so small.
That was the experience of those who took part in one of Nature Coast Marine Group’s shell surveys during the last school holidays. The youngest participants spotted some of the most unusual finds.
After an hour’s search the collection was pooled and spread on one of the picnic tables where David Dedenczuk, was able to share some of his extensive knowledge of local molluscs. The group had found nearly 80 different species and three were rare to this area.
On an earlier survey of Corrigans Beach in 2013 people spent more time searching the beach and found 110 species so there could be even more species waiting to be found.
Among the shells was a “living” fossil – a Brachiopod or Lamp Shell (Magellania flavescens).
Lamp Shell - Photo S Walters Lamp shells can be seen fossilized in the rocks at places like Ulladulla but there must be quite a few alive in Batemans Bay because these shells have been collected on some of NCMG’s other surveys at Corrigans Beach.
The Nature Coast Marine Group has an extensive program of activities where members can have fun learning about our marine environment. To find out more about the Group and to see what’s planned, visit the website www.ncmg.org.au or search for Nature Coast Marine Group on Facebook and follow us there.
This weekend on Saturday 26th October enjoy a trip to Montague Island to see the wildlife (but not land). Leave from Narooma with Underwater Safaris' fast rigid inflatable boats. Book with François or Clover on 0415805479.
And/or Sunday 27th October kayak off Batemans Bay with Region X in double kayaks. Book online or call Josh on 1300 001 060. Both trips offer members substantial discounts. You can find out all the details of meeting places, times, etc when you book.
Photo by Jen Thompson
Some from Nature Coast Marine Group searching for shells