On Saturday, June 5, 2021, Ed took me for a ride in the Maverick. Sometimes I am fussy, refusing to go if the waves are too big or the wind is too strong. But on Saturday, conditions were perfect.
It was a beautiful day, and I was grateful. I was grateful that the St Lucie River/Indian River Lagoon was not a toxic soup this year. I was grateful for the small amount of life in the river. Ed and I put in at the Jensen Beach Boat Ramp and it was crowded. Resident wading birds were there waiting to see if someone would throw them a fish. I noticed, thankfully, the county had put up a sign since the last time Ed and I had visited. Once Ed and I got beyond the docks and out into the Indian River Lagoon the wind picked up and I held on tight! I Suddenly it seemed we were weaving in and out of other boats. I kept yelling “Be careful of manatees!”
“I’m in the channel!” Ed replied, looking at me incredulously.
First we visited Boy Scout Island between Sewall’s and Sailfish Points as I wanted to check out the seagrass or lack thereof. It was growing! There were different kinds, one like a feather, (Johnsons) the other like a thick hair (Shoal). I saw blue crabs and hundreds of small snails. I was so happy to see this. I remember other times recently when there was not one bit of life. Still, it hurts that I have to “be happy” for such a small banquet of what I experienced in my childhood.
“If we can just hold off Lake Okeechobee releases…” I thought and was pleased the ACOE has done so for most of this year. Lake Worth Lagoon and the Caloosahatchee have not been so lucky.
Here, the rains began in late May and the river’s a little darker, not the turquoise blue you sometimes see. Nonetheless, the water looked good and and many families were enjoying themselves. Ed anchored being careful of grasses. I took a walk while he fished. Together we photographed the area.
-Boy Scout Island lies between Sewall’s and Sailfish Points near the Sailfish Flats and St Lucie Inlet -Seagrass beds slowly recovering just off Boy Scout Island 6-5-21 -Excessive sargassum weed and macro-algae not as welcome to see a budding seagrasses-Head of horseshoe crab – maybe molted. Good sign they are still here! -Thousands of snails leaving paths in the sand-A small hermit crab took someone’s shell. A nice one! -Little snails up close-Hand sized hermit crabs, old friends. Once there were thousands. We held races on the beach.-Boy Scout Island is a mangrove island with tidal areas for wildlife. We visited at low tide.Next, Ed and I got back in the boat and jutted through the Crossroads, me holding on for dear life again, -Ed in his glory! Spray on our faces! We arched off around the sea of boats onto a large sandbar close to the St Lucie Inlet.
It was a great adventure anchoring and then walking in the waist high water to the sandbar. I felt like I was a kid again roaming around, looking for shells, breathing in the clear air, lost in the happiness of the experience. We found quite a few fighting conch, pin shells, and clam like creatures all alive inside their shells! But no queen conch. Ed decided to go check that the anchor still held.
I wandered around losing track of time. I don’t think think there is anything more I love than this. I collected shells. Looked in holes. Birds rested and hunted for food. I even saw an osprey catch a fish in the lagoon’s shallow waters. The cloud formations were unbelievable.
When I finally returned to the boat, Ed was asleep. What a classic!
“This is the Life.”
This is the life indeed!-Pin shell and mollusk-Fighting Conch – orange in color -Tiny bit of seagrass and macroalge -Ed sleeps, Sandbar, St Lucie Inlet
23 thoughts on “This is the Life”
Love this! Great photos and story as always. Thanks for posting.
Thanks for the update and all you do Jacqui.
Thank you for reading! I never know how my post will go!
Love your photos. We used to take my daughter out to the sand flats when she was little. Great learning place. She’s in her 30’s now and lives out of state. I am happy to hear life is returning out there. Thanks for sharing.
Teri I do love hearing this. These experiences on the sandbar for kids is life changing. They never forgot and then hold love in their heart for the waters and animals there forever. All the best to your now grown daughter and to you. Thanks so much for sharing.
Oh, and thanks to you as well, Ed!! For “Driving Miss Jacqui”! LOL!
Funny! I like that! Ed is a good sport.
Thank you I love seeing all the pictures of the birds, crabs, shells, grasses, etc. Slowly it seems to be coming back. Praying for no discharges, but have my doubts.
I know, it is hard to get too excited as we have witnessed the destruction so many times. One day we will make that change that changes things so don’t give up this honorable fight we are part of!!! Thanks so much.
Thank you Jacqui. All I can say is maybe, just maybe the “tide” is turning. Much of it to your (an Ed’s) credit.
I do hope so Mark! I think it is. And we must keep pushing to change the status quo of our water management. Thanks!
A wonderful day in Florida’s inshore waters!
Inshore is my preference. Ed wants to go across the ocean one day. I think I have to much respect !!! 🙂
Thank you for sharing, looks like an amazing day!
Deb always extra special to receive a comment from you. A big hello from Ed and me!
I feel like I was on your outing with you. Thank you for taking me along via “your report.” Your photos are great.
Thanks Mom! 🙂
Love seeing this, and the sea grasses.
Thanks Janet. Have been thinking of you while reading about the St Johns River. All those lakes! Yes the seagrass is key.
Enjoy and protect.