Showing posts with label Seaglass. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Seaglass. Show all posts

Ramshorn Water Snails Nano Tank

I recently set up a nano rams-horn snail aquarium from an old jar, a couple of moss balls and some green sea glass I have gathered over the years during my numerous beachcombs. The snails seem to have settled in well, and they have been feeding off the debris among the old moss, and the tank should become a self-care environment. They self-regulate their egg-laying depending on how well they are dining, so it should be easy to tell whether I need to add a few flakes of fish food to the jar...


Sweyne's Eye ~ The Bay (Seaglass Finds)

Some of the seaglass finds from my local beach, including a very rare piece of pink seaglass :) Pictures from the recently published zine, Sweyne's Eye ~ The Bay:

Beachcombing at Hakin

I have been truly spoiled on our weekend retreat :) Taking stroll along the cove below our weekend holiday cottage (pictured below), I was delighted to discover the place was a beachcomber's dream!

Yours truly beach-combing in Hakin

Hakin Cove - a beach-comber's dream
The first thing I discovered amongst the pebbles there was this odd thing - a Portuguese Man o'war!

A Portuguese Man o' war

Close-up of the Portuguese Man o' war
My next find was just as rare - a huge chunk of black Sea-glass!

A large chunk of black sea-glass

And the rarities did not stop there! Check out this beautiful piece of yellow sea-glass I happened upon there too!

Rare yellow sea-glass found at Hakin Cove

Close-up of my yellow sea-glass discovery
As you can see from the above two pictures, I found enough sea-glass on Hakin Cove to more than fill every pocket of my coat and trousers and had to make several trips to the beach in order to collect more of the treasure.

Amber sea-glass
Amber sea-glass
Over my ten years of so of collecting sea-glass, there were two scarce items that I really wanted to find whilst beach-combing. I discovered the first of those last year whilst scouring Ogmore beach - a glass bottle stopper. And on Hakin cove I finally found the second of my coveted grail items. In fact, I kind of found two of them:

I found this one first - a glass marble, which would have originally been found within a vintage cod-neck drink's bottle.

And just a few metres away from this lovely find, I stumbled across this beautifully frosted gaming sea-marble. Just look at the weathering on this gorgeous item - the marble would have needed to have been tumbled in the sea for a good few decades to get that degree of frosting:

A gorgeously frosted sea marble 

My two sea marble finds from Hakin Cove
I found two other unusual items whilst searching the cove, which are worth mentioning here. First, there is this bottle top, which is made from Vulcanite - a material (or process) I had never even heard of before researching my find. This top is around 90 years old and was the stopper for a vinegar bottle produced by the company T. E. Hughes:

And lastly, there was this odd little find:

An odd little find along the shore-line of Hakin Cove
After much research, I discovered this to be a Canister Ball, a.k.a. a Case Shot Ball. A number of these items would have been packed into a metal cylinder and fired from a canon during 18th and 19th Century warfare. When fired, the soft metal container would disintegrate, leaving the shrapnel balls inside to spread out at high velocity in a conical formation towards their target. These weapons caused a great deal of widespread damage to the enemy and were particularly effective during the Napoleonic War and the American Civil  War. A somewhat grisly yet somewhat fascinating find, eh?

Hakin Cove turned out to be the best beach-combing beach I have ever explored. Despite being a rather diminutive cove, I gathered more sea-glass and other interesting artefacts during my short time there than every other beach I have visited combined over the last ten or so years. If you a beachcomber and happen to be visiting West Wales, then do yourself a favour and pay this place a visit. One word of warning though, check the tide times as the cove disappears completely at high tide!

In Search Of Glow Worms..

My wife and I went looking for glow worms the other night. I remember seeing them just a short walk from my house when I was growing up, on some disused land at the bottom of a graig. Sightings of them enchanted me and they were definitely the most magical things I had ever witnessed out in the real world. I do have to admit to being bitterly disappointed when I inspected the glowing critters more closely, however, and discovered them to be rather butt-ugly beetles rather than some kind of supernatural fae creature! 

It has been well over 40 years now since I last saw a glow worm, and my wife has never seen one. And so, finally, after some research on where they are most likely to be seen, we headed out for a late evening walk. 

Our chosen hunting ground was a beach about a half hour's drive from our home and we arrived just as the sun was dipping over the horizon. Parking up near the beach, we walked along the tide-line towards the Nature Reserve. 

Despite the gloom, I snagged this lovely piece
of seaglass from the sands of Oxwich Bay

Evening Primrose and Sea Holly decorated the Dunes that fringed the grasslands Nature Reserve and the sound of crickets that surrounded us made me wish I had brought my audio recorder along with us.

Evening Primrose

Sea Holly

Oxwich Bay at dusk

We waited until darkness settled upon the land before making our way back towards the car, checking for the greenish luminescence of glow works along the route. Alas, there were none to be spotted that night.

Sunset over Oxwich Nature Reserve

Still, we had a very enjoyable walk and the ambience of the night was incredible. I couldn't help but feel a little jealous, however, of the occupants of this holiday home, who had set up camp here for the night:

Camping beneath the stars

Still, both my wife and I had work the following morning, so, with the time now rapidly approaching 11.00p.m., we headed off home for the night.


Whilst in Norfolk visiting my daughter for my birthday, we took a lovely stroll along Winterton-On-Sea. It is a beautiful bay and is listed in the Rough Guide' top 30 places to visit in the world. The beach forms part of the Norfolk Coast Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and is also a Nature Reserve.


Whilst there, I was happy to find this lovely single specimen of seaglass too :)

This was the first of three beaches we visited that day, the other two will feature in following posts...

Newton Beach

I tool a walk along Newton Beach today. It was a beautiful day and I managed to do a little audio field recording whilst down there. You can hear the resulting audio recordings here. I recommend good quality headphones for the best experience:

This was my first visit to Newton Beach and whilst it was not the most scenic of beaches, it did offer  a fine brisk walk and some interesting finds along the route: 

Washed-up tree-trunk, Newton Beach
Seaglass and Pottery found on Newton Beach

Tulm Bay, Skye

Our holiday cottage in Duntulm, Skye

I took an early morning stroll down to Tulm Bay this morning, which is about a 5-minute walk from our holiday cottage in Skye. It was a lovely walk down a gently sloping path with the brooding remains of Duntulm Castle dominating the view to the left.

Duntulm Castle was built in the 14th Century and was the home of Clan MacDonald of Sleat during the 17th Century. The castle fell into ruins in 1732 when Sir Alexander MacDonald built a new home, Monkstadt House, 8 km to the south, using much of the castle's stone for its construction. Legend holds that the owner abandoned the castle after his young son fell from a window and was dashed on the rocks below. The infant's nursemaid's punishment was to be set adrift on the sea on a tiny boat. It is said that the nursemaid's sobbing can still be heard in the castle as she wanders the ruins, clutching the dead infant in her arms. The ghost of a prisoner in the castle has also been reported several times from the castle. Starved of food and water in its dungeons, he went insane and tried to eat his own hands to satiate his hunger! The castle is a forlorn and ruinous site today. And its grim and moody appearance makes no secret of its ghostly heritage.

Duntulm Castle

Beneath Duntulm Castle lies Tulm Bay. Its rocky beach has good views out to Tulm Island,  the Shiant Isles and the Isle of Harris beyond.

Tulm Bay

Tulm Bay, with Duntulm Castle and Tulm Island

Tulm Island, the Shiant Isles and the Isle of Harris beyond

Tulm Island, the Shiant Isles and the Isle of Harris beyond

The beach turned out to be a great site for one of my favourite hobbies, beachcombing, and amongst this morning's finds were:

A sheep bone, washed up on Tulm Bay

Seaglass found on Tulm Bay

Old sea-worn pottery found on Tulm Bay

Tulm Bay
A small murmuration of Starlings, Duntulm, Skye

Its not often that Wednesday mornings turn out to be as good as this one :)

Seaglass Search at Ogmore

Making the most of the unseasonably good weather, I took an unplanned long stroll along the beach at Ogmore-By-Sea today.

The tide was already heading in by the time I reached the beach, so I did not get the chance to explore the rockpools the place is renowned for, but the weather was pleasant enough to just sit on the rocks and chill. Though the tide was coming in at quite an incredible speed and nearly caught me out a few times:

Despite the incoming tide, there was, luckily, still enough sand to partake of one of my favourite hobbies - searching for seaglass. I use the word luckily here for a particular a particular reason as, although there was not much seaglass on the beach, what few pieces I did manage to find were beauties.

Seaglass - Ogmore-By-Sea
One piece I found, in particular, made my day - a complete and perfectly smoothed glass bottle stop. Over the years, I have literally collected many hundreds of pieces of seaglass from innumerable beaches the length and breadth of the UK, but this piece is, beyond doubt, my best find to date:

A perfect bottle stop piece of seaglass
As well as seaglass, I also found lots of hag stones, such as this piece below:

I enjoyed the beach so much that I decided to stay and watch the sun go down.

It was a perfect sunset too, a brilliant end to a lovely sunny day :)