While it is not necessarily bad for the environment, taking large amounts of shells from the beach does detract from the overall appeal of the beach. Others, like you, probably enjoy perusing the beach for shells and you will notice when a beach that once had many shells to explore only has coarse sand. Similar to picking flowers from trees, it is more of an aesthetic thing. Nature is better left for everyone to appreciate and when we start taking bits and pieces home for our personal enjoyment others don’t get to share in the discovery.
Yes, it definitely is a bad idea to collects shells from the beach! It’s not just about enjoyment for others, it’s not environmentally friendly either…
Think about it, you might only take 2 or 3, but if everyone took 2 or 3, that all adds up. Also, you might be taking just a few but think of all these souvenir and jewellery shops; shells are already in a huge demand.
Empty shells are important… Firstly, they act as a home for hermit crabs. As the crab grows it needs to find a new shell to move in to, and I have found naked hermit crabs walking around the beach. Unable to find an empty shell large enough, these crabs eventually die as their body is soft, vulnerable to predators and dessication (drying out in the sun).
Secondly, the shells are actually part of chemical cycles in the ocean. It sounds crazy, but shell collecting is so huge nowadays, that oceanographers have started looking in to what effect shell collecting might have on ocean acidification!
Whenever I visit any ecosystem, I try to leave it as if I have never been there… the old “take only photos” mantra 😀
Click here to cancel reply.
Sorry,At this time user registration is disabled. We will open registration soon!
Don't have an account? Click Here to Signup
© Copyright GreenAnswers.com LLC