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Highland Beach One-Hour Cleanup

Recently, I went on a beach walk and did a one-hour beach cleanup. I started at the northernmost entrance to Spanish River Park, where there is limited street parking on Spanish River Road. I walked north towards Highland Beach.

Overall, the beach was relatively clean, though there were a few concentrations of trash, and plenty of disturbing finds.

Though it was overcast, it was an eerily beautiful beach day.

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The gray sky bled into the gray sea, and without the help of a sailboat I wouldn’t have been able to tell where the horizon was.

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The sea was also silent, a rare sight on the east coast of Florida.

The Findings

Scary Findings (Or Reasons Why You Should Keep Your Shoes On at the Beach!)

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A piece of glass sticking straight up out of the sand. This was found in the park part of the beach, and is the reason why glass is prohibited on most beaches.
I think this is a needle used for blood tests. It is hard to see in the picture, but if you look closely at the top of the teal plastic, you can see the needlepoint. Ouchies!
A rusted, upturned bottle cap.


Other Findings

Beer can.
Small and large plastic bits.
A washed-up dog’s frisbee.
Bottle caps, straws, plastic, plastic, plastic!
A graffiti “artist” left behind the plastic cap to a freshly tagged sea wall.
More plastic junk.

Overall Report

After seeing these pictures, it is sad to say that this was a relatively clean beach. I found most of the trash on the high tide line, where remnants of plastic-laden seaweed were left behind.

The largest concentration of trash was near a rocky cove area.


There was a trash can right next to where all the garbage seems to wash up, and if everyone who walked by put some of the trash each day into that can, we could prevent some of this garbage from washing back out into the sea.

Most items found:

  • Plastic bottle caps, lids, and nipples
  • Tangled fishing line
  • Cigarettes
  • Glass shards
  • Plastic straws and utensils
  • Beer cans
  • Shoe fragments (insoles etc.)
  • Needles and bandaids

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All of this litter, which is dangerous not only to marine animals, but also humans, was removed in less than an hour’s time.

No cleanup is too small. One person can make a difference!

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