The Milk Moon Snail
The Milk Moon Snail, Polinices lacteus (Guilding, 1834), is the least common among the shallow-water moon snails (Family Naticidae). The species has a broad distribution in tropical western Atlantic. In geographic areas where the species is more common, its shell may reach in excess of one inch, but the few samples found locally never exceeded 0.5 inch. The Milk Moon Snail has an egg-shaped, smooth, pure white shell with the umbilicus (the cavity on the base, or "lower" part of the shell) partially obliterated by a shelly callus. The shell illustrated was collected by Susan J. Hewitt on Sanibel in December 2013.
The Milk Moon Snail, Polinices lacteus, from Blind Pass, Sanibel. Photo by José H. Leal.