Spring Makeover at Weymouth Beach

Fresh clean sand newly distributed over Weymouth Beach

Playing with sand on an industrial scale at Weymouth Beach in Dorset this week, earth moving machinery has been restoring the shore to pristine condition by redistributing imported sand – ensuring plenty for sun-bathing and sand castle-making before the better weather and the influx of visitors arrive in this new season.

Piles of imported sand on Weymouth Beach

Piles of imported sand on Weymouth Beach

Piles of imported sand on Weymouth Beach

Piles of imported sand on Weymouth Beach

Mechanical digger moving fresh sand on Weymouth Beach

Mechanical digger moving fresh sand on Weymouth Beach

Mechanical digger moving fresh sand on Weymouth Beach

Mechanical digger moving fresh sand on Weymouth Beach

Weymouth seaside swingboats

Brightly painted swingboats on the golden sands at Weymouth, Dorset, UK (1)

Oh, I do like to be by the seaside,

Oh, I do like to be beside the sea…………..

Brightly painted swingboats on the golden sands at Weymouth, Dorset, UK.

Brightly painted swingboats on the golden sands at Weymouth, Dorset, UK (2)

Brightly painted swingboats on the golden sands at Weymouth, Dorset, UK (3)

Brightly painted swingboats on the golden sands at Weymouth, Dorset, UK (4)

Brightly painted swingboats on the golden sands at Weymouth, Dorset, UK (5)

Brightly painted swingboats on the golden sands at Weymouth, Dorset, UK (6)

COPYRIGHT JESSICA WINDER 2011

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Dog with a ball at the beach

Seaside picture: Small dog reflected in the wet sand as he played with a ball on the beach at seaside town of Weymouth, Dorset, UK on the Jurassic Coast (P1460380aBlog1)

Winter or summer, on a sunny day, Weymouth Beach in Dorset, UK is a great place to walk and have fun – whether you have two legs or four. Everyone loves the seaside. I was photographing the wonderful effect of the blue February sky reflected in the wet sand left by the ebbing tide when this little dog pranced by with his blue ball in his mouth – completing the picture for me.

COPYRIGHT JESSICA WINDER 2011

All rights reserved

Slipper Limpet shells on Weymouth Beach

Weymouth is famous for its fantastic clean sandy beach. However, patches of fine shingle with gravel-sized pebbles and stones do occur here and there. It was on shingle like this that I found masses of empty Slipper Limpet shells – Crepidula fornicata (Linnaeus) – last weekend.

This type of gastropod mollusc shell seems to be the single species most likely to be found on Weymouth beach at any time of year. They get the name from their strange shape which looks a bit like a shoe or slipper. They breed very successfully in our coastal waters although they are an introduced species to the British Isles. Their presence  can affect populations of our native filter-feeding mollusc species like mussels and oysters. When Slipper Limpets settle in vast numbers on other living shellfish, the huge amount of waste matter they generate can coat and suffocate the other animals beneath them, and foul hard substrates so that larvae cannot settle there. 

I have talked about Slipper Limpets in previous postings – so click here if you want to see more pictures and information about Slipper Limpets on Jessica’s Nature Blog.

 

COPYRIGHT JESSICA WINDER 2012

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Beside the seaside at Weymouth

Oh, I do like to be beside the seaside. I do like to be beside the sea……goes the song.

I mostly talk about the natural history of seashores but, of course, there is a lot more to British coasts than that. There is a lot to do with people and their activities – especially when they are out to enjoy themselves.

There were plenty of people, patterns, and colours at Weymouth in Dorset when I visited this delightful old-fashioned seaside resort last week. Here are a few photographs of subjects that caught my eye.

The most exciting was a rare glimpse of a species that is seen less frequently these days – a Punch and Judy Show. [For readers unfamiliar with British seaside culture, this is a puppet show dating way, way back, and in its original form of presentation was considered to be a bit politically incorrect]. This one belongs to the famous Professor Mark Poulton.

There were stacks of blue, green and yellow plastic canoes on the beach for hire to those wanting to get into the water – although the sea was a bit too choppy for boating on the day I visited. 

For people wanting to enjoy the sunshine and watch the view while cosily out of the breeze, there are wind shelters with seats scattered along the seafront. The roof of each of these is trimmed with a decorative, white-painted, wrought iron frieze; a different design on each shelter. This one looked like a row of entwined hearts to me. I love the way the underside of the roof has been painted in a contrasting bright orange red.

More active sorts of people can brave the waves by hiring one of the bright yellow pedaloes arrayed on tethered rows on the sandy seashore.

Many people just want to relax and rest their feet – so there is still a big demand for the traditional British deckchair with its blue and white striped canvas seat, like these lined up on the promenade at Weymouth.

COPYRIGHT JESSICA WINDER 2012

All Rights Reserved