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  • José H. Leal

Shell of the Week: The Atlantic Distorsio

Distorsio clathrata (Lamarck, 1816) has the distorted shell that is typical of the family Personidae. The shell in this species may reach 80 mm (about 3.2 inches), and shows the characteristic constricted aperture, large apertural shield, and lattice-like shell sculpture (clathrus is a Greek word for latticework.) The living animal has a very lush and hairy periostracum (outer shell layer). The species is common in deeper water in the Gulf of Mexico, but this is the first shell known to be found on a local beach (found on Fort Myers Beach in 2021 by local resident Katherine Cantlon).


The Atlantic Distorsio, Distorsio clathrata, from Fort Myers Beach. Photos by José H. Leal.

#distorsioclathrata #atlanticdistorsio #personidae #fortmyersbeach