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Identification help
05-23-2009, 12:19 PM,
Identification help
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I have a rather large shell and I can't find anything like it on any website. I'm no expert but I think it's pretty unique. I'd just like to know what it is and possible how to get rid of the slightly funky aroma that it has but I obviously don't want to damage it. I'd really appreciate someones help!  Thank you!!! <img src="images/smiley/bye.gif" alt="" border="0" />

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<a href="" target="_blank"><!-- m --><a class="postlink" href=""></a><!-- m --></a>  <span class="petit">--Last edited by Paul Monfils on 2009-05-25 21:10:47 --</span>

05-25-2009, 05:09 PM,
Identification help
Hi Jacquie,

Your shell is the Emperor Helmet, from the Caribbean.  Scientific name Cassis madagascariensis.  "Cassis" means "helmet".  "madagascariensis" means "from Madagascar" - Oops!  Such shells used to be brought back to Europe by ships that sailed around the world, and the sailors who collected them and brought them back often didn't keep good records of just where each shell was found.  Apparently the person who first described and named this species had been told it was found in Madagascar.

To get rid of the smell - In a plastic (not metal) bucket, mix one part liquid chlorine bleach (Chlorox or equivalent) with 9 parts water (more or less - doesn't have to be exact).  Lower the shell into it with the broad spiral end facing down.  That will allow the solution to flow all the way into the interior spirals of the shell.  Leave it overnight.  Then just flush it out with fresh water (a pressurized stream like a garden hose with a nozzle is best) and allow it to air dry.  Don't worry, the bleach won't harm the colors of the shell, but it will dissolve out any organic matter trapped inside the shell, and will most likely also make the exterior look nicer.  <span class="petit">--Last edited by Paul Monfils on 2009-05-25 23:15:29 --</span>

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