Tuesday, December 7, 2021

The Answer

 On my previous post I showed you a picture of a strange looking object on the beach.

I had no idea what it was, until I ask  a friend who had a beach house..
Seems it is an egg case from a Skate. A Skate is a bottom feeder closely related to a Stingray.
Interesting facts about the strange looking egg case:

The skate lays the case on the bottom of the sea.
The horn like objects on either end are so it can latch on to seaweed and stay on the bottom.
The pouch is made of a subject called keratin much like human fingernails, making it very strong.
The first few months the embryo inside has no gills, so there is no sea water in it.
Before it hatches, it cracks open after gills form to allow the embryo to get use to the sea water.
Once the shell cracks completely open the discarded case floats ashore.
Some people call these rather strange cases The Devil’s pocketbook
Others a Mermaid Purse
This day and age I had some friends guess that it was a discarded mask!


  1. Dearest Janey,
    That is interesting you came upon a Mermaid's purse!
    They are about 3-4 inches long and I loved the image I found here, with a penny next to it for comparison: https://www.mitchellspublications.com/guides/shells/articles/0074/

  2. I used to find those when I was a beachcombing child with my bucket and spade. I remember someone telling me that they were the egg pouch of a skate.

  3. That is a complicated story, had to look at a translation site to understand what you are writing about... Thought it was a mask too!

  4. It does look like a discarded mask. What an interesting thing. The evolution of nature's creatures is a mysterious process.

  5. I had no idea what this was! How neat!