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Cone Shells for ID
03-13-2009, 09:35 AM,
Cone Shells for ID
You have two old books as references. Manual of the Living Conidae (Kohn ..) and Cone Shells a synopsis of the living conidae (Walls). They cost a lot of money (more than 200 E for the first even 500 E ..) and postal prices are excessives. You will find differents  informations in the two books. If you are not a specialist, a new book is also great  : Encyclopedia of Marine Gasteropods / Alain Robin/ Conchbooks. I this book you find most commun conus and a lot of other shells too. You have only pictures, no explications. It cost 117 euros + post. You can find information on line.  Sorry for my poor english, this is not my foreign langage. Best regards.

04-10-2009, 02:20 PM,
Cone Shells for ID
The value of scientific names is that the same name means the same thing to collectors all over the world.  I remember one time when I was a young collector, a collector in another country wrote me (yes, we used to correspond by actual MAIL without the "e" in those days!) and asked if I had any "turret shells" to trade.  I had a few Turritella species, so I sent him a list.  Turned out he wasn't interested in Turritella, but in turrids - members of the family Turridae.  Some time later another collector - in Japan I think - wrote and asked about "turret shells", so I sent him a list of my available Turridae.  Nope, he was interested in Latiaxis, not Turridae.  Also, "common name" doesn't necessarily mean "English name".  A collector from a non-English speaking country will have other common names for the same shells, in their own language. And, the only shells that have widely accepted common names are those that are well known.  There are many thousands of species that have no common name at all, so the scientific name is the only name.

The light colored shells in the picture above are similar to the pear cone, but the pear cone (Conus patricius) is lighter in color, more slender in shape, and is from West Central America.  The shells in this picture are Conus quercinus, from the Indo-Pacific region, sometimes called the "oak cone".

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