The Angel Risso
At only 6 mm (about ¼ inch), the Angel Risso, Rissoina angeli Espinosa & Ortea, 2002, is another member of the rich micromollusk fauna found in the shallow waters of the barrier islands of Southwest Florida. Its shell is distinctive, with an elongate-conical shape, and a fine sculpture of 25 large ribs per whorl and finer spiral threads that do not cross those ribs (you will need a strong magnifying glass small microscope to be able to see the delicate microsculpture on this shell). The color is translucent-white, and shells of living animals is clear, transparent. Despite its presence in some of the best-known shelling areas in the world, the species was described and named in 2002. Until then, it had been repeatedly misidentified as a similar but separate species in the shell literature and in shell collections.
The Angel Risso, Rissoina angeli. Photos by José H. Leal.