Monday, September 29, 2014


Pat Garber begins her chapter on "Barnacles: The Bane of the Seas" (in her book Ocracoke Wild) with this observation by nineteenth century naturalist, Louis Agassiz: "A little shrimp-like animal standing on its head in a limestone house and kicking food into its mouth."

Pat goes on to explain that for a long time barnacles were believed to be mollusks. Now we know that these critters who foul pilings, anchor lines, and the bottoms of all vessels, from canoes to ocean-going tankers, are marine arthropods, relatives of crabs and shrimp.  

According to Popular Science magazine, "the U.S. Naval Academy estimates that biofouling creates enough hull-drag to increase the Navy's petroleum bill by about $250 million every year."

Our latest Ocracoke Newsletter is about the Unionist North Carolina State Government established at Hatteras in 1861. You can read all about it here:


  1. Anonymous10:17 AM

    Your readers may be interested to know that humorist author Jean Shepherd dealt with barnacles on his radio show one evening. A google search will lead those interested to a link of a page from a truly dedicated fan of all things, well nearly all things J.S. Excelsior!

  2. Anonymous4:28 PM

    Pat Garber should give nature kayak tours! She would be great!....we'd both sign up for it and I am sure a lot of other people would as well......Come on Pat!
    Our fingers are crossed. the Millers