• Overstrand Life

Wednesday 11th August 2021 - The Link Between, Red Seaweed and Amber

Seeing the beach below the promenade this morning strewn with washed up seaweed, most of it red, it looked anything but inviting for anyone with thoughts of building a sandcastle. It may not look attractive but it if you are looking for amber then this is where you need to be. We have only ever found two pieces of this gemstone, which is fossilized tree resin, but I know of others who have found large pieces which they have had made into jewellery. When our sons where children, during our holidays in Cromer, they would spend time on the beach looking for not only for amber but jet too. Unfortunately, they were never successful but were happy to keep running up to us with a stone or two and asking if they had picked up a piece of jet or amber. We were told, with amber being light, it comes in on top of the red seaweed and is most easily spotted if you have the sun behind you. There are stones similar in colour to amber but the best way to determine whether you have picked up a stone or amber is to gently bite on your find and if it is hard then it is a stone but if there is a feeling of softness then you may well have amber between your teeth. If you are really lucky, you may see an insect or plant material as an inclusion. Sadly neither of our two pieces show anything of interest.


Today’s photo needs little explanation – the beach, almost entirely covered in seaweed.