Tons of Plastic And Strange Finds
We get all excited when we find a fancy shell, a sand dollar or a lost cash dollar at the beach. But then there are times we are shocked, perplexed – and maybe even a tad frightened – by what was left behind or washed ashore.
Other than a partially eaten fish, a single flip-flop or countless drink containers, our finds have trended on the boring side. But that’s not the case for some folks.
According to the Atlas Obscura website, “the ocean is always tossing up weird trash and treasures, from rainbow-colored plastic eggs to mysterious sea blobs.”
A few of the more memorable items, according to readers:
- a large blue laundry basket with labels in Japanese
- a corroded man’s Timex watch … still ticking
- a glass bottle with a full-grown shellfish shell trapped inside
- several old, but still functional light bulbs and fluorescent tubes
- a whistle with a tiny crab inside
- bikini bottoms
- what appeared to be a human head on a stick, but turned out be a mannequin head complete with hair
- a dead calf
- a metal box with the cremains of a person
Sadly, much of what washes ashore – or is left behind by unthinking beachgoers – is piles of plastic pollution. According to a recent USA Today feature, “In one day, thousands of volunteers worldwide collected from beaches and waterways enough plastic beverage bottles to fill over 5 standard swimming pools and enough plastic straws to reach the height of over 10,000 palm trees …”
Ocean Conservancy volunteers collected about 20.5 million pounds of trash during International Coastal Cleanup day in September 2017. Topping the list of items found were 2.4 million cigarette butts, which contain plastic filters; 1.7 million food wrappers; and 1.6 million plastic water bottles.
"This is the first year that all 10 of the top-10 items collected are made of plastic,” noted Nicholas Mallos, director of Ocean Conservancy’s Trash Free Seas program.
We love the beach and it breaks our heart to hear about plastic pollution, which is why we launched our COAST is Clear initiative and donate 5% of the purchase price of specially curated products to organizations involved in cleanup efforts.
"You would be amazed at what volunteers find every year along beaches and waterways," said Allison Schutes, Associate Director of Ocean Conservancy’s Trash Free Seas program. "No matter where you are in the world, chances are you’ll see plastic bottles, bottle caps, straws, packaging … then you get items where you just have to wonder, 'how did this get here?'"
Among the weirdest items found during the most recent cleanup day: three hot tubs, a unicycle, an entire car, a paper shredder, and a children’s slide.
So, what’s the weirdest thing you ever found at the beach – other than your quirky cousin Carl? Share with us on Facebook and our other social media sites.