Tag Archive: snails

Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Mollusca:
Class: Gastropoda  (snails and slugs)
Order: Vetigastropoda:  (primitive group of sea snails)
Family: Trochidae (“top snails”, because in many species the shell is shaped like a toy top)

Genus/species: Norrisia norrisi

Red Foot Moon Snail Norrisia norrisi IMG_7601

GENERAL CHARACTERISTICS: Smooth brown shell that ranges in size from a few mm to 55mm or 2 inches.

DISTRIBUTION/HABITAT: Eastern Pacific found on kelp from Point Conception to Baja California, May live in water 15-24°C or 59 to 75°F.

DIET IN THE WILD: The Norris’ top snail feeds mainly on brown algae but in aquariums they use their file-like tongue or radula to eat most types of algae helping to keep the aquarium clean.

PREADATORS: Commonly eaten by seastars.

REMARKS: Used to help control algae in the Philippine coral reef. PR04


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Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Mollusca
Class: Gastropoda
Family: Conidae

Genus/species: Conus marmoreus

Marble Cone Snail IMG_8764

GENERAL CHARACTERISTICS: Shell length to 10 cm or 4 inches. Flat, noduled spire. Reticulated pattern of black or dark brown with white patches overall.

DISTRIBUTION/HABITAT: Red Sea, Indo-Pacific in shallow water to 90 m or 300 ft in depth on coral reef platforms or lagoon pinnacles, as well as in sand, under rocks or sea grass.

DIET IN THE WILD: Molluscivore  A predator of predators; harpoons fishes, worms and other mollusks. Its “harpoon” is a single, specialized modified radula tooth equipped with a spearlike barbed tip. The barbed tooth has a groove through which the snail injects a neurotoxic peptide poison into its victim. The prey is paralyzed then the snail devours it.

Marble Cone Snail  Conus marmoreus (Conidae)

REMARKS: Small cone snails pose little danger to humans beyond a beelike sting; however, large cone snails inject enough toxin to be deadly. About 30 human deaths have been attributed to cone snail envenomation
Research on cone snail peptide conotoxin toxins is an active field and has resulted in a new highly effective painkiller recently approved by the FDA that, unlike opium-derived medications, has a low risk of addiction.

Venoms Cluster PR26

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Kingdom Animalia, Phylum Molluska, Class Gastropoda, Family Helicidae,

Genus/species:   Cornu aspersum aka Helix aspersa

DISTRIBUTON:  Native to the Mediterranean region and western Europe, from northwest Africa and Iberia east to Asia Minor, and north to the British Isles. Has become very abundant in all human-disturbed habitats in regions with a temperate climate.

APPEARANCE:  hard, thin calcareous shell 25–40 mm in diameter and 25–35 mm high, with four or five whorls. The shell is somewhat variable in color and shade but is generally dark brown or chestnut with yellow stripes, flecks, or streaks. The body is soft and slimy, brownish-grey, and is retracted entirely into the shell when the animal is inactive or threatened.  The head bears four tentacles, the upper two of which have eye-like light sensors, and the lower two of which are smaller, tactile and olfactory sensory structures.

DIET: Herbivore and has a wide range of host plants (It feeds on plants only). It feeds on numerous types of fruit trees, vegetable crops, garden flowers, and cereals.

REPRODUCTION/DEVELOPMENT:  Like other Pulmonata, C.aspera is a hermaphrodite, producing both male and female gametes. Mating garden snails shoot at one another with long, sharp “love” darts. If a dart hits its mark, it improves that snail’s odds of reproduction.  For garden snails, there’s more to sex than shooting darts. But “he” can’t fertilize “her” own eggs, so it must mate with another. Courtship takes hours as two snails rub bodies, exchange “love” bites and wave the tentacles on their heads.


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