So I made my way down to where the couple where excitedly talking and he holding something carefully in his hands. I could not help but ask: “What did you find?” He (who turned out to be Francis Morley), showed me five large, dark grey, sand dollars in his hand! This was an exciting find!
We introduced ourselves and talked about the sand dollars. They were dark in color so I wondered aloud if they were still alive? The woman (Sandy Morley) - said she did not think so, and she flipped them over to look underneath for signs of life. We did not see the fuzzy covering that is a good indicator that they are live sand dollars.
This fuzzy covering is most obvious on the bottom of the sand dollars where they have little “feet” or spines underneath their shell. We did not see the fuzzy covering or the little spines so we were all happy that these were “keepers” - had they been alive - I believe they would have put them back. Just as I would not want to kill any creature for the sake of it’s shell.
I found a couple of videos on YOU TUBE that shows a live sand dollar. So next time your on the beach - you can tell the difference!