They're modern-day treasure hunters, and they're here to help you out when you're in panic mode.

If you've lost something valuable in the Jersey Shore sand or water, there are expert searchers waiting for your call. These detectorists have been finding goods for decades, using state-of-the-art equipment and a knack for knowing where the ocean or beach may be hiding something.

"Most of us never give up. It's a drive to find it," said Edward Trapper, a Forked River resident who handles recoveries in Ocean County.

Shore visitors aren't just losing jewelry. And anything metallic can be found with a metal detector — that includes keys and smartphones.

If you've lost something in tidal waters, time is of the essence, Trapper said.

Trapper (aka NJ Ring Finder on Facebook) is one of 38 individuals listed on the New Jersey page of The Ring Finders. It's one of a couple local networks that can be found online.

The more information you can give an expert searcher, the better odds you have of reuniting with your lost item.

"Some people have an idea of where they lost something, and there are some people that have no idea," said John Favano, who runs Ring Finders South Jersey.

Beyond the specific information — where, how, and when an item was lost — Favano does his own detective work to determine where a ring or necklace may have traveled, especially when water is involved.

"I take into account the wave action, tides," Favano said. "I can go chest-deep, conditions permitting."

Summertime is obviously the busy season for these hobbyists. Many searchers accept calls around the clock, and they'll do their best to get to the scene as soon as possible.

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