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  • José H. Leal

Carrier Snails!

Carrier snails (family Xenophoridae) are gastropods that attach other shells, pieces of corals, or little pebbles to their own shell. To do that, a carrier snail holds the object with the front part of its foot, adjusting it to an adequate position along the last shell whorl, where it will then be “glued” with fresh shell material secreted by the snail's mantle. Carrier snails are cousins to true conchs in the family Strombidae: The image below shows the general aspect of a carrier snail body, which is very similar to the bodies of true strombid conchs (for those of you who are familiar with Florida mollusks, think of the body of a Florida Fighting Conch). This aquarium image of a Xenophora cerea, from Vlasoff Reef, Queensland, Australia, is an entry by Tassey Weinreich at the 2020 Malacological Society of Australasia Photo Competition; visit #msaphotocompetition.


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