Pre-Order your iPhone 6 case now!

Empty Barnacle Shells On an Old Boat by AuntDot

Canvas Prints

Available to buy on…

Empty Barnacle Shells On an Old Boat by 

Canon PowerShot SX260 HS; 1/125s, f/4.0, ISO 100, focal length 5.8mm; AUTO setting

I didn’t know much about barnacles until I took this photo and looked up some information. (See article below) These empty barnacle shells were found on an old boat, the Miss Clarabelle, on the property of the Cedar Key Museum State Park in Cedar Key, Florida, U.S.A.

Top Ten Winner in the “Man & Nature, Decaying Together” challenge in Withered, Feb. 4, 2013
FEATURED in Time Worn, Jan. 25, 2013
FEATURED in Born to Create, Jan. 24, 2013
FEATURED in Superbly Visual, Jan. 22, 2013

From Animal Planet, Crustaceans:
Barnacle, a small saltwater animal with a protective shell-like covering. There are more than 1,000 species. Barnacles attach themselves permanently to ships, wharves, and rocks, and to other marine animals. Barnacles on the hull of a ship increase friction and can reduce the vessel’s speed. The ship must then be put in dry dock to have the bottom scraped. To prevent barnacles from clinging to ships, the hulls are either treated with toxic paint containing tin or copper or are coated with plastic.

Young barnacles hatch from eggs and develop into free-swimming larvae that resemble tiny crabs. The young barnacles secrete a gluelike substance and attach themselves to a suitable surface. They slowly change into jellylike creatures the size of small marbles. They then secrete layers of calcium carbonate (lime), which may be yellow, red, purple, or brown. The barnacle’s legs stick out like tentacles from an opening in the top of the shell. At their tips are cirri, feathery appendages that sweep plankton and other food into the mouth.

The most common barnacles are gooseneck barnacles and acorn barnacles, named for their shape. Gooseneck barnacles have a stalk, which they use for attachment; acorn barnacles have no stalk—they attach themselves directly onto a surface. In Europe and North America, barnacles are eaten as a delicacy.

What’s Special About a Barnacle?

Adult barnacles attach themselves to rocks and other hard surfaces. They feed on living things, or organisms (AWR guh nihz uhmz), that float in the water. Barnacles have special limbs or body parts that gather these organisms in so that the barnacle can feed on them. Because barnacles are attached to, and rarely move from, their perches, they have developed a special way to produce young without any mate.

A barnacle is called a hermaphrodite (hur MAF ruh dyt). That means that barnacles have both male and female reproductive organs. They can produce both sperm (male reproductive cells) and eggs (female reproductive cells). This reproductive strategy allows them to fertilize themselves and produce offspring, even when there are no other barnacles nearby. If two barnacles happen to be close to one another, however, they can mate and produce young.

Barnacles belong to the class Cirripedia of the subphylum Crustacea. Gooseneck barnacles belong to the genus Lepas; acorn barnacles to the genus Balanus.


barnacle, crustacean, old boat, decay, shells, barnacle shells, empty barnacle shells on an old boat, auntdot, nature, man made, dilapidated, weathered, withered, macro, closeup

Having lived most of my life in the northeast U.S., I am enjoying retired life in sunny Florida. I enjoy photographing many different kinds of things, but especially flowers and animals, including the beautiful birds found here in Florida. I am currently using a Canon EOS Rebel XSi/450D camera, a Canon 55-250 mm telescopic zoom lens, and a Sony P10 Cyber-shot digital camera. My newest acquisition is a Canon PowerShot SX260 HS, a point and shoot which I will be carrying in my purse.

View Full Profile


  • AuntDot
    AuntDotover 1 year ago

  • Manon Boily
    Manon Boilyover 1 year ago

    oh!…. that’s beautiful AuntDot. nice discovery ;)

  • So happy you like it, Manon! Thanks bunches!

    – AuntDot

  • heatherfriedman
    heatherfriedmanover 1 year ago


  • Thanks so much, Heather! Much appreciated!

    – AuntDot

  • Evita
    Evitaover 1 year ago

    Fantastic find… lovely textures and colours, wonderful work Dot !!!! ☺♥

  • Thank you, Evita! Truly appreciated!

    – AuntDot

  • Monnie Ryan
    Monnie Ryanover 1 year ago

    Terrific find!!

  • Thanks so much, Monnie!

    – AuntDot

  • Tammera
    Tammeraover 1 year ago

    *Congratulations!! Great Work!!

  • Thanks so much, Tammera! Truly appreciated!

    – AuntDot

  • Pamela Jayne Smith
    Pamela Jayne S...over 1 year ago

    Thank you for adding your work to the group – we look forward to seeing more!
    Click the banner to see your work in the group!

  • Thanks Pamela!

    – AuntDot

  • Ron Hannah
    Ron Hannahover 1 year ago

    Magnificent shot!!

  • Thanks so much! Truly appreciated!

    – AuntDot

  • Guendalyn
    Guendalynover 1 year ago


  • Thanks so much, my friend!

    – AuntDot

  • Scott  Cook
    Scott Cookover 1 year ago

    Great stuff Aunt Dot!

  • Thanks so much, Scott!

    – AuntDot

desktop tablet-landscape content-width tablet-portrait workstream-4-across phone-landscape phone-portrait