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Southwest Florida Shells with Emphasis on Sanibel & Captiva

José H. Leal

Family Tornidae


Teinostoma altum

Pilsbry, 1953

High-spired Vitrinella

Shell size up to 2.2 mm (about 0.08 inch) in diameter. As the scientific and common names of the species indicate, the shell has a tall spire, resembling a miniature moon snail (family Naticidae). The shell lacks any sculpture except for microscopic growth lines. The protoconch sunken within the remainder of the shell. The umbilicus is shallow. Fully grown shells show a prominent spiral flange projecting from the aperture and partially covering the umbilicus. Shell color whitish. The species has ample distribution in Florida and the Gulf of Mexico. This shell was dredged 14 miles offshore of the Sanibel Lighthouse, donated by Vivienne Smith, and identified by Harry G. Lee. Photos by James F. Kelly.

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