10 Most Unusual Shoreline Discoveries

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From mysterious objects that washed ashore to giant undiscovered ocean creatures found lying on the beach – here are the most unusual shoreline discoveries.

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Number 10 Snowballs
Thousands of perfectly formed snowballs appeared on a Siberian beach, in 2016. Their size ranged from about that of a tennis ball to nearly 3 feet across. They were formed as the result of a rare natural phenomenon. It was a combination of temperature, the shape of the coastline and consistent winds.
Number 9 Robot Hand
Throughout the years, there’ve been many bizarre items found on the shores of New York City. While many seem to echo the city’s past, others seem to be reflective of its future. Such was the case of this recent odd discovery, a partially complete robot hand. While context would definitely be welcomed in this case, not much information is available about it. Strange as that might have been, it wasn’t the oddest thing found in New York Harbor.
Number 8 Tropical Sea Pickles
Pyrosoma atlanticum, or sea pickles, are a type of free-floating colony of numerous tiny organisms called zooids. Also known as pyrosomes, they usually live in warm, tropical waters but, in 2014, they started appearing on the coastal north-west of the United States. Then, in 2017, beachgoers were stunned as millions of these pink invertebrates washed up on Oregon shores. Their sudden appearance may indicate they’re far more capable of adapting to colder waters than previously thought. That’s bad news for commercial fisheries operating in the area.
Number 7 Frozen Turtles
While it isn’t unusual for turtles to wash up on the shores of New England, the 2018 season saw a dramatic increase. In less than a week around Thanksgiving, close to 200 turtles were found on the Cape Cod shoreline. Fortunately, wildlife volunteers reacted quickly and some of the turtles were saved. They were, what rescuers call, “cold snap stranded”. This means that their bodies, caught in the sudden cold, had slowed down to the point that the turtles were no longer eating or swimming and simply washed ashore with the tide. Yet, many of them were frozen solid.
Number 6 Garfield Phones
During the 1980s a company created novelty Garfield phones, based on the popular cartoon icon. Designed during a time when the land line was the norm, the phones were eventually discontinued. Yet, in the decades that followed, Garfield phones have been sporadically turning up on the shorelines of western France. Up until 2019, nobody knew where they kept coming from. Trapped underneath the rocks, they discovered a destroyed container which most likely got lost at sea in the storm.
Number 5 Swivel
Finding a swivel on a beach would have been commonplace a few hundred years ago, but in the 21st century, it’s a remarkable find. It was found by 13-year-old Christopher Doukas was a discovery that had the potential of re-writing history. This means that others had made contact with Australian shores prior to Captain Cook, in 1770.
Number 4 Giant Tree
While finding driftwood washed ashore isn’t that unusual, the sheer size of the discovery on La Push beach warrants inclusion on our list. The western Washington community is surrounded by the Olympic National Park.
Number 3 Ice Tsunamis
Also known as ice shoves, they sometimes occur on beaches, particularly in North America. During springtime, the ice that covers large bodies of water begins to crack but it doesn’t completely melt. Strong, sustained winds then take the large ice sheets towards the shores. As recently as April, 2019, along the shores of Lake Eerie, ice walls were as high as 30 feet.
Number 2 Feet
Since late August, 2007, at least 20 feet have been washing up on coastal islands of British Columbia and other shorelines in Canada as well as on the coast of Washington, in the US. Most of the feet were found in sneakers. It’s believed the air trapped inside the sneakers is what enabled them to stay afloat. Ocean currents could have carried them for over 1,000 miles, so their point of origin is hard to trace.
Number 1 Giant Sunfish
In 2019, fishers from South Australia made a fascinating discovery at the mouth of the Murray River. From a distance, the men thought they’d stumbled upon a weird-looking piece of shipwreck. Upon closer inspection, they realized it was actually a sunfish. The fishers took some pictures with it, which subsequently gained a lot of attention online. Its laterally-flattened body basically looks like a giant fish head, with fins and a tail. One of the heaviest fishes in the world, adult sunfish can weigh up to a staggering 5,000 pounds. Even though it was quite large when compared to them, the specimen found by the fishers was considered medium-sized.

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