A bizarre looking creature stopped a mum in her tracks this week as she enjoyed a leisurely stroll on the beach.
On the sand she spotted something she had never seen before. At first glance it looked like a shell but when she picked it up, it was surprisingly flexible.
The strange item, found on a beach in Perth, left the mum so perplexed she brought it home to show her daughter.
“Hi just curious to see if anyone knows what this is. Mum found it on the beach. It’s bendy and feels like plastic,” her daughter posted to a local community Facebook page.
Social media users were quick to suggest what the plastic-like marine object could be.
“It looks like it’s come from a sea cucumber,” one woman wrote in a comment.
Someone else said it looked like a frilled dogwinkle – a species of sea snail.
Others said they too had noticed the mysterious item while out and about, with one spotting them regularly on her local beach about 90km south of Perth.
Some suggested the most probable answer was a conch shell egg sack, also known as a whelk egg casing.
Dried up egg capsules are laid by a giant conch then stuck to a rock with mucus. When the capsules are filled with eggs, the mass stands upright, according to the WA government’s online beachcombers education kit.
Once the eggs are hatched, tiny snails about two centimetres in length crawl out.
The one found in Perth had clearly been discarded after being used.
One woman suggested the family hold on to it as a souvenir.
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