Why You Shouldn’t Take or Buy Seashells
Leaving seashells where they are is one of the easiest ways to protect marine life and make a small contribution to saving our oceans. You might be wondering: what’s wrong with taking just one shell? What difference does it really make? Well, it can make a world of a difference.
Here are a few reasons why you should leave seashells where they are:
- It Robs a Sea Creature of a Home / Shelter
Did you know that hermit crabs depend on empty spiral shells for their survival? These sea creatures need to move homes when they get too big for their current shell. If they can’t find a larger one, they’ll die from exposure or get gobbled up by a predator.
Small fish and octopus also use shells for shelter and protection. Imagine what would happen if we continued to rob ocean animals of the tools they need for their survival.
And it’s not just to protect marine life. Many birds use parts of seashells to build nests.
- Animals Die to Harvest Pretty Shells!
National Geographic article shows a newly harvested mollusk shells- living animals still inside them that were put through a horrifying process, including being laid out to dry in the sun and then dunked in oil and acid.
Those shells were then shipped to artisans in nearby towns who make jewelry and other mementos to sell to tourists.
- It Exacerbates Existing Issues of Over Tourism
Researchers believe that shell collecting surely had a role to play, but that there were potentially other factors involved as well, including the use of recreational vehicles, recreational clam harvesting as well as the grooming and cleaning of the beach with heavy equipment during summer months.
So, shell collectors weren’t completely to blame – but tourist activities certainly were. If we are already responsible for this decline, why add to it by taking what doesn’t belong to us?
- It Can Affect the Ocean’s Ecosystems & Increase Shoreline Erosion
The ocean supports many delicate ecosystems. If one thing is out of balance, the results can be devastating. Some experts say the removal of shells can impact shoreline erosion patterns not only that, but every shell performs some ecological role.
So, instead of taking the seashells, pick up any trash you see when you’re on the beach. Yes, you can make a difference and help protect marine life!
At The EcoFairy, our goal is to help you build a more sustainable life by offering you a line of reusable products. We offer products that last and that will help you reduce the amount of plastic you use.
More info on our website: https://www.theecofairy.com