Thousands of strange hollow spheres thrown onto the northeastern beach this week have puzzled and amazed locals.
The unusual gray heart-shaped shells washed ashore in Fraserburg have left many people puzzled over their unusual appearance and the reasons why they were washed ashore in huge numbers.
The strange little balls that cover most of the beach are actually a subspecies of the sea urchin Echinocardium cordatum, often referred to as “sea potatoes.”
In fact, the beach has become a graveyard of the hollow remains of hedgehogs, whose Latin name literally translates as “thorny heart”, which corresponds to their unusual shape.
The Wildlife Fund claims that medium-sized hedgehogs usually live in burrows in the sand and on the seabed. They are covered with beige thorns, which give them a fluffy appearance, and have tubular “legs” that they use for feeding. When they die, their empty shells take on a white, fragile appearance, sometimes described as looking like a baseball.