Wednesday, October 21, 2020

Sand Dollar Island: Altered, But Natural Beauty Intact


These mangroves on Sand Dollar Island were no match for Category 4 Irma.

These mangroves on Sand Dollar Island were no match for Category 4 Irma.

The bird nesting habitats on Sand Dollar Island has been altered, wider in some places and narrower in others. Much of the vegetation has been covered with sand or washed over, and it will be curious how that will affect the returning nesting birds next summer.

Hurricane Irma has also created several breaches in two distinct places. It will make it more challenging for beach walkers to navigate the mangrove labyrinth.

Best time to go is during low tide and for everyone to check the low tide chart.

The rushing waters from the gulf can be fast running and could reach up to your knee or higher. Consider walking with a buddy and bring your cell phone just in case you get stranded, you can call for help. Bear in mind cell phone reception can be spotty.

Hurricane Irma has created a bonanza of hard-to-find shells on Sand Dollar Island, such as this handful of alphabet cones.

Hurricane Irma has created a bonanza of hard-to-find shells on Sand Dollar Island, such as this handful of alphabet cones.

On the upside, Sand Dollar Island is a treasure trove for hard-to-find shells and sand dollars.

You’ll also find that Hurricane Irma had a sense of humor. She left a wave runner at the spit – a reminder of her recent swift and furious visit to Sand Dollar Island. Something to make you chuckle as you enjoy your visit to this special spit of sand called Sand Dollar Island.

Hurricane Irma’s sense of humor left this wave runner stranded on the spit. “FREE Pick Up” - Waiting for a very high tide.

Hurricane Irma’s sense of humor left this wave runner stranded on the spit. “FREE Pick Up” – Waiting for a very high tide.

Hurricane Irma has created two beaches connecting the Gulf with the lagoon. This is the first breach and during high tide this is a fast moving river. Check the low tide chart before your visit to Sand Dollar Island (SDI). Photos by Maria Lamb

Hurricane Irma has created two beaches connecting the Gulf with the lagoon. This is the first breach and during high tide this is a fast moving river. Check the low tide chart before your visit to Sand Dollar Island (SDI). Photos by Maria Lamb

SDI’s resident osprey, the official “greeter” to the spit. This is the location of the second breach. During low tide there is no water under the driftwood perch. This photo was taken as the high tide was coming in.

SDI’s resident osprey, the official “greeter” to the spit. This is the location of the second breach. During low tide there is no water under the driftwood perch. This photo was taken as the high tide was coming in.

In parts of Sand Dollar Island where we gained some sand, the beach became wider; in other areas, it became much narrower.

In parts of Sand Dollar Island where we gained some sand, the beach became wider; in other areas, it became much narrower.

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