Seashells are a lovely memento of a beach trip, but when you get them home, it is important to clean them out as soon as possible. Seashells may have living animals inside of them, both the original mollusk that built the shell and scavengers like crabs who took up residence. There are several ways to remove the small animal inside the seashell, so take action and clean out your souvenirs from the seashore.
Place your seashells in a pot.
Cover the seashells with water.
Place the pot on the stove and bring the water to a boil.
Allow the water to boil for three minutes.
Remove the pot from the stove and allow it to cool.
Use tweezers to pull the small creatures from the seashells. At this point, they are dead and easy to remove. In some cases, you can simply tip the shell and they will fall out.
Things You'll Need
Clean your seashells by soaking them in a mixture that is ½ water and ½ bleach. Afterward, rinse it thoroughly with clean water.
If time is not a problem, bury the shells outside in the garden, leaving a marker to show where you buried them. The creature inside will die within a few days. You may leave the shell out in the garden for two weeks or longer to allow insects and worms to clean it for you.
- Seashells.org; How to Clean Live Seashells
- "Seashells of North America"; R. Tucker Abbott, Herbert S. Zim and George Sandstrom; April 2001