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Overview

Brief Summary

Necklace shells are predator snails which prey on other molluscs. It is easy to recognize their victims. They grate a hole in the shell of the prey with their tongue. The hole on the one side is wider than on the other side. You hardly ever find living necklace shells on the beaches or dikes. Empty shells are strewn along all the beaches in the flood mark.
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Comprehensive Description

Description

 A helical shell with distinct lines between the rounded whorls, up to 3 cm high by 3 cm wide. The last whorl of the shell occupies about 90% of the shell, ending in the large aperture. The last whorl bears one row of brown marks. The shell bears a distinct, usually rounded umbilicus. Shell buff or paler yellow in colour. The head bears a short snout and two flattened tentacles. The foot is enlarged and partially covers the shell and head in mobile animals. The foot acts as a plough-share as the animal moves through the soft substrata on which it lives. The flesh of the animal is cream or yellow in colour with red-brown marks.Euspira catena is very similar to Alder's necklace shell Polinices pulchellus but with some differences. Euspira catena is a much larger snail, the spire is more obvious in Euspira catena and the whorls are shouldered and have distinct joins (sutures). The shell of Euspira catena is much paler in colour than Polinices pulchellus and has only a single row of brown markings on the last whorl. However, Euspira catena and Polinices pulchellus have similar distributions and habitat preferences and are, therefore, likely to be found together.

 Egg capsules are laid in a characteristic open collar-shaped mass of jelly and sand grains (Graham, 1988, Hayward et al., 1996). The collar is ca 7.5 cm in diameter with eggs capsules arranged in regular lines within the collar but bulging slightly on its surface. Breeding occurs in spring and early summer (Graham, 1988).

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Ecology

Habitat

Depth range based on 272 specimens in 1 taxon.
Water temperature and chemistry ranges based on 238 samples.

Environmental ranges
  Depth range (m): 0 - 174
  Temperature range (°C): 7.254 - 18.834
  Nitrate (umol/L): 1.122 - 11.403
  Salinity (PPS): 33.401 - 39.009
  Oxygen (ml/l): 5.240 - 6.422
  Phosphate (umol/l): 0.147 - 0.824
  Silicate (umol/l): 0.987 - 5.452

Graphical representation

Depth range (m): 0 - 174

Temperature range (°C): 7.254 - 18.834

Nitrate (umol/L): 1.122 - 11.403

Salinity (PPS): 33.401 - 39.009

Oxygen (ml/l): 5.240 - 6.422

Phosphate (umol/l): 0.147 - 0.824

Silicate (umol/l): 0.987 - 5.452
 
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 On sandy bottoms from low water spring tide level to depths of 125 m. Often buried as it feeds on bivalves.
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Wikipedia

Euspira catena

Euspira catena, previously known as Natica catena, common name the large necklace shell, is a medium-sized species of predatory sea snail, a marine gastropod mollusc in the family Naticidae, the moon snails. [3]

Contents

Description [edit]

The sand collar egg mass of Euspira catena

The rounded shell is thin and polished and brownish-yellow, with a row of reddish markings just below the suture of the last whorl. It can grow to about 3 cm (1 in) and has a short spire and seven rounded whorls separated with distinct sutures. The lowest whorl occupies about 90% of the volume. It has a large umbilicus and the operculum is ear-shaped and spirally wound. The foot is cream coloured and very large, partially covering the shell when the animal is moving. The head has two long flattened tentacles and a short snout with extensible proboscis. The large necklace shell might be confused with a similar but smaller species, the common necklace shell (Euspira pulchella).[4][2]

Distribution [edit]

The large necklace shell is found on the coasts of Northwest Europe, from the Mediterranean Sea to the Skagerrak and in the Northeast Atlantic Ocean.[5]

Biology [edit]

The large necklace shell lives buried in the sand and gravel of the lower shore and the neritic zone to depths of 125 metres. It feeds on bivalve molluscs, penetrating their shells with its proboscis and sucking out the contents.[2]

Egg capsules are laid in a spirally wound collar of jelly embedded with sand grains. The remains of these may be found on the beach.[2]

References [edit]

  1. ^ Da Costa E. M. (1778). Historia Naturalis Testaceorum Britanniae. London: Millan, White, Elmsley & Robson XII + 254 + VIII p., 17 pl.
  2. ^ a b c d "Necklace shell - Euspira catena". Marine Life Information Network. 
  3. ^ a b Bouchet, P. (2012). Lunatia catena (da Costa, 1778). Accessed through: World Register of Marine Species at http://www.marinespecies.org/aphia.php?p=taxdetails&id=150590 on 2012-08-15
  4. ^ Barrett, J. & C. M. Yonge (1958) Collins Pocket Guide to the Sea Shore. Collins, London.
  5. ^ Marine Species Identification Portal
  • Backeljau, T. (1986). Lijst van de recente mariene mollusken van België [List of the recent marine molluscs of Belgium]. Koninklijk Belgisch Instituut voor Natuurwetenschappen: Brussels, Belgium. 106 pp.
  • Gofas, S.; Le Renard, J.; Bouchet, P. (2001). Mollusca, in: Costello, M.J. et al. (Ed.) (2001). European register of marine species: a check-list of the marine species in Europe and a bibliography of guides to their identification. Collection Patrimoines Naturels, 50: pp. 180-213
  • Muller, Y. (2004). Faune et flore du littoral du Nord, du Pas-de-Calais et de la Belgique: inventaire. [Coastal fauna and flora of the Nord, Pas-de-Calais and Belgium: inventory]. Commission Régionale de Biologie Région Nord Pas-de-Calais: France. 307 pp.
  • Torigoe K. & Inaba A. (2011) Revision on the classification of Recent Naticidae. Bulletin of the Nishinomiya Shell Museum 7: 133 + 15 pp., 4 pls
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