Macrocypraea cervus, the Atlantic Deer Cowrie, is a species of sea snail mainly distributed in the tropical Atlantic Ocean and in the Caribbean Sea, in the waters along South Carolina, Florida, Mexico, Brazil, Cuba and Bermudas. This cowry is elongated, its basic colour is light brown, with small whitish ocellated spots on the dorsum. The mantle of the living cowries is dark greyish and completely covered by short fringes. This species can mainly be encountered under corals and rocks in shallow waters. They feed on algae.
Water temperature and chemistry ranges based on 1 sample.
Depth range (m): 33 - 33
Temperature range (°C): 23.384 - 23.384
Nitrate (umol/L): 1.004 - 1.004
Salinity (PPS): 36.162 - 36.162
Oxygen (ml/l): 4.675 - 4.675
Phosphate (umol/l): 0.138 - 0.138
Silicate (umol/l): 0.942 - 0.942
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Molecular Biology and Genetics
Barcode data: Macrocypraea cervus
There are 3 barcode sequences available from BOLD and GenBank. Below is a sequence of the barcode region Cytochrome oxidase subunit 1 (COI or COX1) from a member of the species. See the BOLD taxonomy browser for more complete information about this specimen and other sequences.
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Download FASTA File
Statistics of barcoding coverage: Macrocypraea cervus
Public Records: 3
Specimens with Barcodes: 3
Species With Barcodes: 1
This species is one of the largest cowries. It is quite similar in shape and colour to Macrocypraea cervinetta, but it is much larger. The maximum recorded shell length is 190 millimetres (7.5 in), while minimum length is about 40 millimetres (1.6 in).
The shell is elongated, its basic colour is light brown, with small whitish ocellated spots on the dorsum, like a young fawn (hence the Latin name cervus, meaning 'deer'). Juveniles have no spots. The dorsum also shows a few transverse clearer bands, and a longitudinal line where the two edges of the mantle meet. The apertural teeth are dark brown. The mantle of the living cowry is dark greyish and completely covered in short fringes.
Living cowries can mainly be encountered under corals and rocks in shallow waters at a maximum depth of 35 m. They feed on algae.
- Welch J. J. (2010) - "The “Island Rule” and Deep-Sea Gastropods: Re-Examining the Evidence" - Simon Joly, McGill University, Canada