Capt. Brian’s Back Porch Goes Inside

Capt. Brian’s Back Porch Goes Inside

Tropical storm Isaac is forecast to scoot by later today through the night. There are many things to prepare for in a storm and yes shells are one of them. I spent much of the morning putting the shells off my back porch in safe containers. It was kind of like old home week. Every shell tells a story. I was remembering where I found the shells, Cayo Costa on a December full moon, The Ten Thousand Islands on a January full moon, Cayo Costa on a hot and sweaty day in August, Panama meeting new friends, camping on my boat under the stars, every shell tells a story. It is one of the beautiful things about shelling. I have included a picture of my boat and where it rides out tropical weather when we get it. The last picture is of two good luck shells that will stay on the boat to help ride out the storm. My thoughts go out to all my shelling friends along the Gulf Coast from Florida, Alabama, Louisiana, and Mississippi, take care in the storm. I look forward to seeing you all soon. Capt. Brian
Brian Holaway

I have been a Shelling Guide to Cayo Costa State Park since 1995. Many people know me as the Shelling Guide and Captain with Captiva Cruises over the past 20 years. In 2016 I began solely offering private small boat charters to the islands of Pine Island Sound including Cayo Costa State Park, Cabbage Key, Useppa Island, Pine Island and North Captiva. I am a certified Florida Master Naturalist, licensed USCG Captain, avocational photographer, seashell enthusiast and passionate about the history, people and culture of Southwest Florida, especially Cayo Costa. I volunteer as a member of Friends of Cayo Costa State Park and have great respect for the heritage of Cayo Costa. My goal is to provide guests with an overall experience and appreciation for the waters, islands, shells, plants, marine life, wildlife, history and people of this unique area of Southwest Florida.

  • Susan
    Posted at 23:49h, 26 August

    No sprained ankles this time hopefully! Thinking of you and hoping your family rides this out safely and without any damage.

  • Kim@Snug Harbor
    Posted at 23:49h, 26 August

    That's a lot of shells and a lot of work. You know, you should probably ship some of those shells to friends across the country for safe keeping…. LOL! Is there a story behind 2 lucky shells in the bottom of the boat or is that a sea superstition? Stay safe Brian!

  • Nancy
    Posted at 23:49h, 26 August

    Wow – that is one empty back porch! I can't believe it only took part of the morning to pack everything away – you must have had help 🙂 Melissa and I can sure relate to memories of Cayo on hot and sweaty days in August! Love the good luck shells in your boat! Take care and be safe!!!!

  • Little Black Scrap Cat
    Posted at 23:49h, 26 August

    Be Safe!!! We're thinking about y'all!!!

  • AntKaybe
    Posted at 09:48h, 27 August

    Enjoy a much needed day of rest.

  • Moira
    Posted at 16:06h, 27 August

    Stay safe – I agree with Kim!! lol

  • Lori White
    Posted at 16:06h, 27 August

    After being in town for Debbie, we can relate to the strong winds, rain, and all the effects of the storm. Stay safe and think about the good shelling once the storm passes!

  • Janet from IL
    Posted at 00:29h, 28 August

    What a treasure trove! Love the large King's Crown Conch. I'd LOVE to find one of my own. The ones i have found have been alive….. Do you know if the juvenile KC looks different from a juvenile Fighting Conch?
    Take care and stay safe!!

  • Capt. Brian Holaway
    Posted at 01:29h, 29 August

    The two shells I left on my boat were from two very young shellers. The first shell came from a very young sheller who I carried through the flats. Her older brother was a keen observer of shells. After two hours of exploring we started our trek back to the boat. The little girl said "this is for you". Twenty minutes later her older brother gave me the other shell. They have been on my boat ever since.

  • Capt. Brian Holaway
    Posted at 01:32h, 29 August

    Susan, no sprained ankles on this storm. The storm moved to the west so all is good here.

  • Capt. Brian Holaway
    Posted at 01:38h, 29 August

    Janet, The juvenile KC looks totally different from the juvenile fighting conch. The KC had sharp points and has strips that are dark brown with white strips. The fighting conch can be white and yellow. Both great finds!

  • Roxanne Reinhart
    Posted at 19:27h, 29 August

    Wow Brian. That looks like a lot of work. But definitely worth saving every last one of them. I love your coke bottles too. So glad that the storm was not any worse than it was. Can't wait to see what the sea spills onto the beach in the next week or so!!

  • Donna R from NY
    Posted at 19:48h, 30 August

    A stunningly beautiful collection! Just think how easy your next post could be, just reverse the order of the pictures and you're done, lol!

  • Capt. Brian Holaway
    Posted at 23:18h, 30 August

    That is funny Donna.

  • Janet from IL
    Posted at 19:05h, 31 August

    Capt. Brian,
    Thank you for your response. Can't wait to see what shells you find after Isaac!