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Old 12-27-2012, 06:04 PM   #1
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Default what is this stuff?

Animal, vegetable or mineral? This stuff is all along the water line here in Kill Devil Hills, Outer banks, NC, the day after a big storm, Dec 2012. It is clear, filamentous, feels plant-like rather than plastic so I think it is natural but I had no luck on google trying to identify it. Have any of you seen anything like it?
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what is this stuff?-beach-debris-1-web.jpg   what is this stuff?-beach-debris-water-line-web.jpg  
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Old 12-27-2012, 07:07 PM   #2
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Good question! It seems organic but strange.
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Old 12-28-2012, 10:39 AM   #3
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It looks organic to me. It's hard to tell from your photos. You got me.... maybe uprooted clumps of glasswort or scouring rush or water horsetail?
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Old 12-28-2012, 10:00 PM   #4
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Glasswort is a good thought, though it would have to have been uprooted in vast quantities to be washed ashore like this was. The structure of the plants looks right.

My photos are a good representation of what the stuff looks like - clear, cylindrical filaments, segmented, looking like short straws, in piles about 4 inches across, all along where the high tide line was. I am reasonably sure it is plant in nature (I picked "aquatic animals" to put it in, since it is clearly aquatic, and marine, and this seemed a closer fit than threads about wildflowers).

Do any of you live along the mid-Atlantic coast and have you ever seen such stuff wash up? I never saw anything like it in California, or here in the summer time. I think it is likely some sort of seaweed but was hoping someone here would know.
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Old 12-29-2012, 09:54 AM   #5
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Very odd. Never saw it here at Jersey shore.
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Old 01-04-2013, 05:34 PM   #6
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Well, it washed back to sea two days later. I need to bring a magnifier or microscope with me next time....

Beach debris is an interesting thing. This is the first time we have been in the winter, and there were none of the jellyfish and sand dollars we find in the summer. Conversely, there was this weird stuff, razor clams, whelk egg cases and a bajillion skate egg cases (you get a few of those in the summer, but a tiny fraction of these numbers).
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Old 01-10-2013, 02:49 PM   #7
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Quote:
each debris is an interesting thing.
But it can also be man made and entrapping.
what is this stuff?-p1040672.jpg
This is a pile of twisted fabric, string and plastic that had washed ashore. It was entangled full of sea fans.
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