We volunteered for the annual Assateague Beach Cleanup held at Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge (NWR).
For nearly 3 hours, we enjoyed a beautiful day picking up things that shouldn’t be on the beach. Collected items included: balloons, plastic bottles, cans, rope, snack bags, straws, shoes, sandals, sunglasses, light bulb, and beach toys. Larger items like tires and wood were picked up separately by NWR personnel.
The annual beach cleanup is part of the International Coastal Cleanup sponsored by The Ocean Conservancy and Virginia Clean Waterways.We were the only ones on this part of the beach, which normally doesn’t have many beachgoers as it’s somewhat remote from the nearest parking area. This was a shell collectors paradise with assorted sizes and shapes.And these arranged in a heart shape with initials “TC” and “NC” . . .Other finds included numerous horseshoe crabs, turtle shell, flipper bone, dolphin skull and remains of a sea gull.All of these are not to be removed from the beach as they are considered natural occurrences. It’s always OK to collect shells and sea glass, which is harder to find sometimes.Even though the volunteer turnout was sparse, we had a great day — and seagulls were the only other beach walkers.As NJ natives, our thoughts were with those impacted by last week’s massive fire on the Seaside Park and Seaside Heights NJ boardwalk.