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What is white sand made of?

2 Answers

The famous white-sand beaches of Hawaii, for example, actually come from the poop of parrotfish. The fish bite and scrape algae off of rocks and dead corals with their parrot-like beaks, grind up the inedible calcium-carbonate reef material in their guts, and then excrete it as sand.

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The white sand of the Tularosa Basin in New Mexico, which is the main feature of White Sands National Monument, is made of gypsum and calcium sulfate.

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