Monday, October 31, 2016

The Hobby!

We mentioned in our last post that Nicole has developed a new hobby. 

In our previous travels she enjoyed identifying new birds, flowers, insects and fungi.  Now that we are stationary and so close to the beach her interests have turned to....

                                          SEABEANS!  a.k.a. Drift Seeds

Beans 2
               The sorting, identifying and learning about has been interesting.

        Many of these have traveled years across the ocean from far away lands.

   Not all have been identified and so they sit by the computer awaiting confirmation.

                  Larger drifters have taken up residence on the back porch.

Seeds and beans are not the only thing we have been collecting during our daily beach walks.  We also pick up large amounts of trash. The amount is especially high since Hurricane Matthew and we find a lot of items from Cuba and Haiti.  

Amongst the wrack (seaweed line) and trash we often find Flotsam.  Flotsam are by definition the wreckage of a ship or its cargo found floating on or washed up by the sea.

There are several tracking groups for specific items like the 353,264 plastic daisies or the 4.8m pieces of Legos that were 'lost at sea' in 1997. 

They are still washing up on beaches today.  Two decades later!

   Among Nicole's new seabeaning friends, Barrettes are a popular Flotsam collectible. 

It is assumed that a good number of the barrettes are from a cargo spill while others were simply lost by swimmers. 

Each year upwards of 120 million cargo containers are transported via our oceans and over 600 of them (and their contents) unintentionally end up in the ocean.  Most companies do not want to publicize their lost cargo (and they are under no obligation to do so).  Thus, the origination of all items that wash up on the beach is not always know. 

Depending on where the container goes overboard there is a certain predictability (based on known currents) as to where items will wash up. 

There is also, however, the random 'rule breaker' that finds its way to a beach it wasn't 'supposed' to land on.  Example, if we find one of the specific lego items that went overboard in 1997 on our beach here in FL it would be a record breaking trip.  So, we are on the lookout!

The above items are probably not true 'flotsam' in that they were most likely lost by children playing on a beach somewhere.  But they are sea drifters none the less and for that reason are a popular collectible amongst the beachcombing crowd.  The lucky few may even find some vintage items amongst the wrack. 

We've got a pretty good collection building and look forward to seeing what the ocean brings us tomorrow.

Well, that's an intro to the latest hobby.  There will be more when we've got it!