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venice-shark-teeth-identification

HUNTING FOR SHARKS’ TEETH

Many people find shark teeth simply strolling along the beach scanning the sand for the shiny black teeth. In our 30 years walking the Anna Maria Island beaches we have unfortunately seen very few.
The best place we have found to look for sharks’ teeth is beach accesses south of the Venice Jetty including Casey Key, Sharky’s Beach and Caspersen Beach.
Casey Key Beaches—
Nokomis Beach
The sand and water here are impeccable and generally very low on seaweed. You will find lots of shark teeth here either washed up on shore with the seashells, or by sifting in the sand just a few feet into the water.
North Jetty
Head South on Casey Key Rd. a couple miles and you will dead-end at the North Jetty. First, you will hit a large parking lot on your right which leads to the beach, pavilions with grills and playground area. Or continue a couple feet to the North Jetty parking lot. Public restrooms are accessible from either parking lot as well as a concession stand. Lots of shark teeth here as well.
Sharky's Beach
Travelling down Tamiami Trail on Venice Island (Business 41) turn right on San Marco Dr. When this dead-ends on Harbor Dr. turn left and travel about ½ mile. You will see Sharky’s on the Pier restaurant on your right along with a lot of parking for the beach right next to the restaurant. Public restrooms and rinsing stations are available. If you park at the restaurant, you can walk the pier for a great view, or dining is reasonably priced.
 
Caspersen Beach
At the extreme south end of Venice’s beaches. Travel south on Tamiami Trail (Business 41). Turn right on San Marco Drive. Continue South on Harbor Drive you will dead-end on this beach. The sand isn’t quite as nice, and there are more large rocks in the water. It’s generally a quieter beach with less people. This beach is also good for scuba diving. They have public restrooms here, and there is a playground with a pavilion in the parking lot farthest South.
Here are a few things you need before you start your Shark teeth search. Some people use a plastic/metal beach shovel, a shovel with a screened basket fitted onto the handle, a kitchen strainer, or just scoop the sand and shells with their hands. Basically any sifter will do, but the plastic hand-held ones are better for kids. Look for something that isn’t going to bend or break with some wet sand in it. Visit any Beach Shop, Wal-Mart, Ace Hardware (there is one on Anna Maria Island) or the Dollar Store is always a great place to buy a strainer.
You might find fossil parts, bits of coral, interesting shells or small pebbles, but it is likely that at least one or more teeth will be found in most large scoops.

Some will tell you the best time to collect teeth is often after a storm, but that is not always true. It is different with every storm, some will bring a lot of teeth in or it may carry them further out.

To make your day more enjoyable don’t forget your hat, sunscreen, water shoes (optional) and small bag or container for your shark teeth.
Have fun!
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Written by Terry Whyte

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