What is Coastal foraging? Its a great way of getting back to nature, it’s also very self satisfying. It’s gives an enormous feeling of self achievement from start to finish especially when eating your own foraged foods. Physical and mental well being are important and foraging is a good way of maintaining it
Getting out and about among the intertidal zone is a great pick me up. Exercise and excitement spur you on as you check out the nooks, crannies and under weed. It’s not just the foraging that give a great sense of wellbeing. If you are into nature in general or have children, it’s a great thing to get involved in. One of the most satisfyingly experiences for the mind is getting back to nature.
All manner of fascinating life lives with in the inter tidal zone, some of which are highly unusual looking. Theres something about hunting through rocks and kelp and finding that big crab or the mini beasts along the way. Coastal foraging is much more tham finding free food as it literally opens up a whole new world.
A good tip is the keep it fun and sustainable, never take more than what you will need. Try to move around so as not to have a large impact on a small area. This allows the creatures to continue breeding and repopulating the area. Always leave the areas as you found them such as putting rocks or weed back in place.
One mistake people make when coastal foraging is thinking it’s all about just lobster and crab. These may be a quick fix for a larger meal but you will be missing out on so much more. Why not try a bit of everything to see what you prefer? Even some of the sea weed is edible just like you can buy in Chinese restaurants. One thing to remember is to make sure anything you take is in size. Check the legal size limits if in doubt leave it, always take a measure with you.
For more ideas on what you can eat while coastal foraging and even ways to cook what you find check out YouTube. There are plenty of videos full of hints, tips and ideas, I watch them regular. If I was to recommend a few with varied content they would be, The Fish Locker, Smash Fishing. For purely coastal foraging I would look at “Coastal foraging with Craig Evans”. His videos will show you how experienced he is by making it look so easy.
If at first you don’t succeed do not be disheartened, I always do a bit of research before trying new places. Check out pictures of areas online so you can see if they look suitable at low tide. Now if you fancy trying coastal foraging never overlook the following advice.
Safety! Remember the sea can be a dangerous place to be around, especially at low tide. Always know your tides and times as the size of them always vary. Large or small tides can come in quickly depending on the area. These can often fill in gullies behind you, blocking your way back. Weed and kelp covered rock can be extremely slipping so good footwear is essential. Try not to go alone and this is more so at night time. If you do always tell a responsible person where you are and what time you are due back. Even plan on a few phone calls to check in for peace of mind. If in doubt just bug out, it’s that simple.