Saturday, July 20, 2013

Collecting Sand Dollars on Jekyll Island

How to tell the live ones from the dead ones
Live Sand Dollar
On Jekyll Island, sand dollars can be found in abundance. As the tide goes out, these lovely shells are exposed for all to see. This poses a unique problem for conservationist. Tourist, with all their excitement, tend to over collect. They not only take the dead sand dollars but also the live ones. I chose to believe this is done out of ignorance not due to a lack of caring.

Also, if you dig these little guys up on the beach, 9 times out of 10, they are still alive. They may make you think they are dead because inactivity but once placed in the water, they pep right up.

If everyone does their part, there should be sand dollars for our children, their children and their children to enjoy. So please, only collect dead sand dollars and leave the live ones to reproduce. Below are examples of both.

Dead Sand Dollar Washed up on the Beaches of Jekyll
Dead Sand Dollar
Live Sand Dollar
Dead Sand Dollar 
To bleach Sand Dollars, just set them out in the sun for a few days. If they turn the snowy white that you are looking for you can set them in a cup of 1 cup of bleach for a day, and then, set in sun for several days.

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