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Identification Needed for Seashells found along the Gulf of Biscay - Printable Version

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Identification Needed for Seashells found along the Gulf of Biscay - milz - 10-20-2009

Hello,

I scoured the internet to find some information about my seashells which I found along the Gulf of Biscay, in the south of France, to no avail. Luckily, while I was at the beach that time, I was told these seashells are called 'eyes', and they can only be found along the shores in the south of France and along the Gulf of Mexico. Could anyone identify these shells?

Thanks in advance!

Milz

As a comparison, I put a coin next to each shell:

Pics: <a href="http://s603.photobucket.com/albums/tt112/Milz17/Seashells/" target="_blank"><!-- m --><a class="postlink" href="http://s603.photobucket.com/albums/tt112/Milz17/Seashells/">http://s603.photobucket.com/albums/tt11 ... Seashells/</a><!-- m --></a>  <span class="petit">--Last edited by Milz on 2009-10-21 08:36:50 --</span>


Identification Needed for Seashells found along the Gulf of Biscay - dave r - 10-21-2009

Hi Milz, they are not shells as such but opercula. This is like a 'trap door' that the animal uses to close the aperture after it has withdrawn into its shell so sealing itself in away from predators. Not all shells have them and some are soft and sort of 'plasticy' but these are from shells of the family Turbinidae which always have a hard shelly operculum. Some species have them brightly coloured and some call them 'cat's eyes', if you google up Turbo petholatus you will see them. I suspect yours are from the species Bolma rugosa which lives in the Mediterranean and adjacent seas.
Hope this helps,
Dave
P.S. are you in the U.K.?


Identification Needed for Seashells found along the Gulf of Biscay - paul monfils - 10-21-2009

Here's a nice website about opercula:

<a href="http://www.nansaidh.us/operc/" target="_blank"><!-- m --><a class="postlink" href="http://www.nansaidh.us/operc/">http://www.nansaidh.us/operc/</a><!-- m --></a>


Identification Needed for Seashells found along the Gulf of Biscay - milz - 10-21-2009

Wow, thanks, that was exactly what I was looking for!

Haha, I'm not British, actually, though the one pound coin might suggest I am. I'm Dutch, I've been to London once, hence that one pound coin.. it was great there!

Thanks again, and keep up the good work!

Milz


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