Perhaps you've had the amazing experience of coming upon these beautiful "By-the-Wind-Sailors" quite unexpectedly at the beach, but I never had until this weekend while at the Washington coast. Their scientific name is Valella valella and they spend their days skimming the surface of the ocean by means of a small blue float (deflated in the photos here) made of concentric circles of gas-filled tubes. Their short tentacles hang just below the surface, feeding on plankton, and with no active means of propelling themselves, they sail along at the whim of the winds. Occasionally, (or more aptly "seasonally") they are beached by the hundreds of thousands. This phenomenon is occurring right now, up and down the west coast of North America, as evidenced by photos from two people I follow on Instagram; one who lives in Northern California, and the other in Southern California. I must say, this sight was spectacular, and even more so because the day was clear and the water was a gorgeous blue.
Hope you've had a wonderful weekend!
(I'm back in the studio, mustering up the courage to slap some paint on a blank canvas.)
Oh -- and if you're interested, come join me on Instagram.
I think it's a great platform and it's lots of fun