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Haliotidae

383

HALIOTIDAE

Haliotidae

Abalones
iagnostic characters: Shell ear-shaped, depressed and loosely coiled. Spire eccentric and
protruding only a little or not at all. A spiral row of holes on the left side of body whorl, sometimes
on tubular projections, the last few remaining open. Aperture broad, occupying most of the underside,
with a remarkably thickened inner lip. Interior nacreous, with a big subcentral muscle scar. No operculum.
Head with a short snout and long, rounded tentacles bearing eyes on short lateral stalks of their outer
bases. Foot broad and ovate, very strong. A sensory ridge around the edge of the foot, bearing a series
of tentacles. Two gills, the right one slightly reduced in size.

D


interior
nacreous

eccentric
spire

open
holes
ventral view

dorsal view

Habitat, biology, and fisheries: Firmly attached to hard substrates by their powerful muscular foot, from
intertidal to depths of about 50 m. Active during the night, crawling rapidly about and rasping algae. Sexes
separate, fertilization external. Eggs released singly, each one enclosed in a gelatinous sheath and
hatching as a planktonic larva. Abalones are commercially important species as food and for shell
ornaments. Though tropical species are relatively small, compared to the temperate ones, they are actively
collected in the area, due to the high demand of the Japanese market.
Similar families occurring in the area
None. Shell characters of the Haliotidae are very distinctive.
Key to species of interest to fisheries occurring in the area
1a. Outer surface of shell nearly smooth, except for low spiral cords on early whorls and on
the left side of body whorl . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ® 2
1b. Outer surface of shell conspicuously sculptured . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ® 3


384

Gastropods

2a. Shell elongate-ovate, with a somewhat protruding spire; outer lip slightly sinuous in the
middle (Fig. 1) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Haliotis asinina
2b. Shell ovate, with a low, non-protruding spire; outer lip regularly convex (Fig. 2) . . . Haliotis glabra
protruding
spire

outer lip

Fig. 1 Haliotis glabra
(exterior)



Fig. 2 Haliotis glabra
(exterior)

Fig. 3 Haliotis varia
(exterior)

3a. Shell ovate, rather flattened; periphery of left side keeled . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ® 4
3b. Shell elongate-ovate, rather inflated; periphery of left side not keeled (Fig. 3) . . . . Haliotis varia
coronate
spire
4a. Shell relatively large (up to 7 cm in
length); upper part of left side depressed; holes on tubular projections,
giving the spire a coronate appearance (Fig. 4) . . . . . . . . . . . . H aliotis ovina
4b. Shell relatively small (up to 4.5 cm in
length); upper part of left side not
depressed; holes not prominent
(Fig. 5) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Ha liotis planata

Fig. 4 Haliotis ovina
(exterior)

Fig. 5 Haliotis planata
(exterior)

List of species of interest to fisheries occurring in the area
The symbol $ is given when species accounts are included.

$ Haliotis asinina Linnaeus, 1758
$ Haliotis glabra Gmelin, 1791
$ Haliotis ovina Gmelin, 1791
$ Haliotis planata Sowerby, 1833
$ Haliotis varia Linnaeus, 1758
References

Habe, T. and S. Kosuge. 1964. A list of the Indo-Pacific molluscs, concerning to the Japanese molluscan fauna.
Superfamily Pleurotomarioidea. Tokyo, National Science Museum, 8 p.
Pickery, R. 1980. Haliotidae. Gloria Maris., 19(2):23-32.
Shepherd, S.A., M.J. Tegner, and S.A. Guzman Del Proo. (eds). 1992. Abalone of the world. Biology, fisheries and
culture. Proceedings of the 1st international symposium on abalone. Oxford, Fishing New Books, 608 p.


Haliotidae

385

Haliotis asinina Linnaeus, 1758
Frequent synonyms / misidentifications: None / None.
FAO names: En - Donkey’s ear abalone; Fr - Ormeau oreille-d’âne.

(after Kira, 1962)

ventral view

dorsal view

Diagnostic characters: Shell thin, elongate, elliptical-ovate in outline, rather inflated and arched
dorsoventrally. Spire somewhat protruding, apex close to posterior end of shell. Outer surface nearly
smooth, except for growth marks and low spiral cords on early whorls and on left side of body whorl. Holes
ovate, nearly flush with surface of shell, the last 5 to 7 holes open. Ridge of inner lip not flattened,
somewhat raised anteriorly and much thickened on posterior margin of the aperture. Outer lip slightly
sinuous in the middle. Inner side of shell smoothish, muscle scar usually faint. Colour: outside of shell
lustrous, olive green or brown, with various, often triangular patches of pale green or cream. Interior
highly iridescent, with predominant pink and green shades.
Size: Maximum shell length 12 cm, commonly to 9 cm.
Habitat, biology, and fisheries: In coral reef areas. Intertidal and sublittoral to a depth of about 10 m.
Common, but not aggregating in dense populations. In life, the exceptionally large green mantle almost
covers the shell, which is then devoid of encrusting marine growths, unlike those of the other species.
Actively collected in the Southeast Asian countries, for its shell and large fleshy animal. In the Philippines,
the animal is commonly preserved and shipped abroad.
Distribution:
Indo-West
Pacific, from eastern part of
Indian Ocean to Melanesia;
north to southern Japan and
south to southern Queensland.


386

Gastropods

Haliotis glabra Gmelin, 1791
Frequent synonyms / misidentifications: Haliotis picta Röding, 1798; Schismotis glabra (Gmelin, 1791) /
None.
FAO names: En - Glistening abalone; Fr - Ormeau glabre.

ventral view

(after Springsteen and Leobrera, 1986)

dorsal view

Diagnostic characters: Shell ovate in outline, with a low, non-protruding spire. Outer surface
smoothish, only sculptured with low spiral grooves and overriding radial lines. Holes slightly raised above
surface of shell, the last 5 or 6 holes open. Ridge of inner lip flattened, its posterior part somewhat hiding
the internal coils of spire. Outer lip regularly convex. Inner side of shell smoothish, reflecting the outer
sculpture, muscle scar faint. Colour: outside of shell greenish brown, with cream or whitish streaks
and blotches. Interior silvery, iridescent.
Size: Maximum shell length 5 cm, commonly to 4 cm.
Habitat, biology, and fisheries: On rocky bottoms, often in coral reef areas. Intertidal and shallow subtidal
water. Collected for its nacreous shell and edible flesh. In the Philippines, the animal is frequently preserved
and shipped abroad to Japan.
Distribution: Restricted to
the tropical West Pacific, from
the Philippine Archipelago to
southern Indonesia.


Haliotidae

387

Haliotis ovina Gmelin, 1791
Frequent synonyms / misidentifications: Haliotis latilabris Philippi, 1848; H. ovina Chemnitz, 1786
(Invalid name); Ovinotis ovina (Gmelin, 1791) / None.
FAO names: En - Oval abalone; Fr - Ormeau ovale.

ventral view

(after Kira, 1962)

dorsal view

Diagnostic characters: Shell moderately thin, rounded-ovate in outline, keeled on periphery of left
side. Holes on tubular projections, giving the low spire a coronate appearance; last 4 to 6 holes open.
Outer sculpture of weak spiral grooves crossed by rather coarse, obliquely radiating undulations, sometimes forming spiral rows of nodules. Upper part of left side of body whorl depressed, lower part convex
and weakly ribbed spirally. Ridge of inner lip wide and flat, its posterior part not hiding the well-marked
internal coils of spire. Outer lip regularly convex, sometimes undulated on the margin by the outer
sculpture. Inner side of shell irregularly undulated radially, muscle scar obscure. Colour: outside of shell
greenish to reddish brown, generally with a few irregular radiating stripes of cream or yellow. Interior
nacreous silver.
Size: Maximum shell length 7 cm, commonly to 6 cm.
Habitat, biology, and fisheries: Attached to corals or under rock ledges. Littoral and shallow subtidal
zones. Actively collected for its edible flesh and nacreous shell. In the Philippines, its meat is preserved
and shipped abroad or sold in local markets.
Distribution:
Indo-West
Pacific, from the eastern part
of the Indian Ocean to Melanesia; north to southern Japan and south to southern
Queensland.


388

Gastropods

Haliotis planata Sowerby, 1833
Frequent synonyms / misidentifications: Sanhaliotis planata (Sowerby, 1833) / None.
FAO names: En - Planate abalone; Fr - Ormeau aplati.

ventral view

(after Springsteen and Leobrera, 1986)

dorsal view

Diagnostic characters: Shell rather small, rounded-ovate in outline, keeled on periphery of left side,
low spired. Outer surface weakly tubercular, with low radial folds near the spire and fine spiral cords.
Left side of body whorl with a few spiral threads, not depressed along its upper part. Holes not raised
above surface of shell, the last 4 or 5 holes open. Ridge of inner lip wide and flat, its posterior part not
hiding the internal coils of spire. Outer lip regularly convex. Inner side of shell somewhat bumped and
reflecting the outer spiral sculpture, muscle scar not prominent. Colour: outside of shell greenish or
reddish brown, with irregular cream mottling, often with alternating light and dark stripes at periphery
of inner lip. Interior nacreous silver.
Size: Maximum shell length 4.5 cm, commonly to 4 cm.
Habitat, biology, and fisheries: Attached to rocks in coral reef areas. Intertidal and shallow subtidal
waters. Collected for its nacreous shell and edible flesh. In the Philippines, the animal is preserved and
shipped abroad or sold in local markets.
Distribution: Indo-West Pacific,
from Sri Lanka to eastern Indonesia; north to southern Japan
and south to Northern Territory
(Australia).


Haliotidae

389

Haliotis varia Linnaeus, 1758
Frequent synonyms / misidentifications: Haliotis concinna Reeve, 1846; H. semistriata Reeve, 1846;
H. viridis Reeve, 1846; Sanhaliotis varia (Linnaeus, 1758) / None.
FAO names: En - Variable abalone; Fr - Ormeau bigarré.

(after Kira, 1962)
ventral view

dorsal view

Diagnostic characters: Shell thick, elongate-ovate in outline, rather inflated, not keeled on periphery
of left side. Outer sculpture extremely variable, comprising irregular radial folds crossed by low, rounded
spiral ribs of different thickness, some of them warty to weakly knobbed. Periphery of left side with a few
nodulose spiral cords. Holes rounded to oval, on slightly elevated tubercles, the last 4 or 5 holes open.
Ridge of inner lip well developed, its posterior part hiding the internal coils of spire. Outer lip regularly
convex. Inner side of shell somewhat reflecting the variable outer sculpture, muscle scar sometimes well
marked. Colour: outside of shell with highly variable colour patterns of brown, reddish, greenish, or
cream. Interior nacreous silver.
Size: Maximum shell length 8 cm, commonly to 6 cm.
Habitat, biology, and fisheries: Among rocks and under stones, in rocky shores and coral reef areas.
Littoral to shallow subtidal depths. Sometimes very common. Regularly collected for food and shellcraft in
many countries of the Indo-West Pacific area.
Distribution: Widespread in
the Indo-West Pacific, from
East Africa, including the Red
Sea, to Melanesia; north to
Japan and south to southern
Queensland.


390

Gastropods

LOTTIIDAE

Lottiidae

(= Acmaeidae)

Lottiid limpets
iagnostic characters: Shell conical, not coiled, bilaterally symmetrical, without apical perforation or
marginal slit. Apex central or somewhat anterior. Sculpture more or less developed, essentially
radial. Internal border of aperture more or less distinctly defined. Interior of shell porcelaneous, never
iridescent, without a calcareous septum, but with an anteriorly interrupted horseshoe-shaped muscle
scar. No operculum. Head with a strong snout, and with or without eyes. Foot large, very strong. A single
true gill present in the mantle cavity.

D

radial
ribs

apex
anterior

lateral view of shell

head
single
true gill

posterior

dorsal view of shell

muscle
scar
ventral view of shell

Habitat, biology, and fisheries: Sedentary animals, common on exposed hard substrates where they clamp tightly by means of their large
foot. Graze on encrusting lichens and algae with a powerful radula.
Hermaphroditic. Fertilization external. Eggs hatching as free-swimming
planktonic larvae. Lottiidae and other limpets are commonly collected
for food by coastal populations of Southeast Asia and western Pacific
islands.

foot
ventral view of animal

Similar families occurring in the area
Crepidulidae (Cheilea species): inner side of shell with a calcareous septum shaped like a half funnel
projecting vertically from the apex.
Fissurellidae: shell conical, with a hole at the apex or a notch on the anterior margin.
Patellidae: not distinguishable from Lottiidae by shell features; differ anatomically by the absence of true
gills, which are replaced by fringes of tentacles on the mantle edge.
branchial
fringe of
tentacles

apical hole

half
funnel-shaped
septum
ventral view of shell

Crepidulidae (Cheilea species)

ventral view of animal

Fissurellidae

Patellidae


Lottiidae

391

Phenacolepadidae: shell conical, thin and whitish, with a posteriorly recurved apex.
Siphonariidae: pulmonate snails with limpet-shaped shell, living on supratidal and intertidal rocks; interior
of shell with a muscle scar forming an incomplete ring, opening on the right side where there is a shallow
radial groove and often a weak lobe on the shell margin.
low radial groove
interrupting the
ring-shaped
muscle scar

posteriorly
recurved
apex

ventral view

dorsal view

Siphonariidae

Phenacolepadidae

Key to species of interest to fisheries occurring in the area
1a. Outside of shell with a few strong radial ribs, strongly produced at the margin (Fig. 1)

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Patelloida saccharina
1a. Outside of shell with numerous fine radial ribs, not produced at the margin (Fig. 2) . . Patelloida striata

Fig. 1 Patelloida saccharina (exterior)

Fig. 2 Patelloida striata (exterior)

List of species of interest to fisheries occurring in the area
The symbol $ is given when species accounts are included.

$ Patelloida saccharina (Linnaeus, 1758)
$ Patelloida striata (Quoy and Gaimard, 1834)
References

Christiaens, J. 1980. The limpets of Hong Kong with descriptions of seven new species and subspecies. In Proceedings

of the first international workshop on the malacofauna of Hong Kong and southern China, 23 March-8 April
1977, Hong Kong, edited by B.S. Morton. Hong Kong, Hong Kong University, pp. 61-83.
Lindberg, D.R. 1986. Names changes in the “Acmaeidae”. Veliger, 29(2):142-148.
Ponder, W.F. and R.G. Creese. 1980. A revision of the Australian species of Notoacmea, Collisella and Patelloida
(Mollusca: Gastropoda: Acmaeidae). J. Malac. Soc. Aust., 4(4):167-208.


392

Gastropods

Patelloida saccharina (Linnaeus, 1758)
Frequent synonyms / misidentifications: Collisellina saccharina (Linnaeus, 1758); Patelloida bellatula Iredale, 1929; P. lanx (Reeve, 1855); P. paropsis Iredale, 1929; P. pentagona (Blainville, 1825); P.
saccharinoides Habe and Kosuge, 1966; P. stella (Lesson, 1830); P. stellaris Quoy and Gaimard, 1834 /
None.
FAO names: En - Pacific sugar limpet; Fr - Patelle sucrée.

ventral view

(after Short and Potter, 1987)

dorsal view

Diagnostic characters: Shell solid, opaque, with a variable and rather elevated shape. Outline roughly
elongate-ovate, strongly scalloped, somewhat narrowing anteriorly. Apex subcentral, frequently eroded.
External sculpture of 7 to 9 large, raised radial ribs that strongly project at the margin giving the shell
the appearance of a web-foot, and weaker riblets in the interstices. Main radial ribs sometimes more
numerous (up to 12 ribs in the form saccharinoides, and to 20 in the Australian subspecies stella). Interior
smoothish, with low radial undulations corresponding to the main outer sculpture. Colour: outside of shell
greyish white, with dark grey or brown banding in the interstices of ribs, sometimes forming V-shaped
marks towards the margin. Interior porcelaneous white, rimmed or spotted with black on the margin;
apical region olive green, yellow or whitish and profusely speckled with brown spots or blotches.
Size: Maximum shell length 5 cm, commonly to 4 cm.
Habitat, biology, and fisheries: Common on coastal rocks and other hard substrates in exposed areas.
Also in rock pools. Intertidal. Collected for subsistence by coastal populations. In the Philippines, the shell
is commonly used to make decorative items.
Distribution: Indian Ocean
and the tropical West Pacific,
from India and Sri Lanka to
Melanesia; north to Japan
and south to southern
Queensland.


Lottiidae

393

Patelloida striata (Quoy and Gaimard, 1834)
Frequent synonyms / misidentifications: Chiazacmea striata (Quoy and Gaimard, 1834); Patelloida borneensis
(Reeve, 1854) / None.

En - Striate limpet; Fr - Patelle striée.
Maximum shell length 5 cm, commonly to 4 cm. Common on coastal rocks. Intertidal and sublittoral
fringe. Collected for subsistence by coastal populations. Indian Ocean and tropical West Pacific,
from India to the Philippines; north to Japan and south to Indonesia.

ventral view

dorsal view

(after Springsteen and Leobrera, 1986)


394

Gastropods

PATELLIDAE

Patellidae

Patellid limpets
iagnostic characters: Shell conical, not coiled, bilaterally symmetrical, without apical perforation or
marginal slit or groove. Apex central to somewhat anterior. Sculpture more or less developed,
essentially radial. Aperture ovate or irregularly polygonal, without a defined internal border. Interior of
shell porcelaneous or iridescent, without a calcareous septum but with a horseshoe-shaped muscle
scar, interrupted anteriorly. No operculum. Head with a strong snout and a pair of tentacles, generally
provided with eyes. Foot large, very strong. True gills absent, replaced by a fringe of respiratory
tentacles between the internal edge of mantle and the foot.

D

branchial
fringe of
tentacles

head

anterior

muscle
scar

apex
radial
ribs

posterior
ventral view of animal

lateral view of shell

ventral view of shell

Habitat, biology, and fisheries: Sedentary animals, common on exposed hard substrates where they
clamp tightly by means of their large foot. Mainly intertidal, often occurring in dense populations. Many
species exhibit homing behaviour, excavating a shallow scar to which the shell margin conforms exactly,
and returning to stick fast to the same spot after foraging for food. Graze on encrusting lichens and algae,
or scrape tissue from kelp, with their powerful radula. Sexes separate or hermaphroditic, depending on the
species. Fertilization external. Eggs hatching as free-swimming planktonic larvae.
Patellidae and other limpets are commonly collected for their edible foot by coastal populations in Southeast
Asia and tropical West Pacific islands.
Similar families occurring in the area
Crepidulidae (Cheilea species): inner side of shell with a calcareous septum shaped like a half funnel
projecting vertically from the apex.
Fissurellidae: shell conical, with a hole at the apex or a notch on the anterior margin.
half funnel-shaped
septum

marginal notch
anterior
apical
hole

ventral view

Crepidulidae (Cheilea species)

apex

posterior

lateral view

ventral views

Fissurellidae


Patellidae

395

Lottiidae: not easily distinguishable from Patellidae by shell features; differ anatomically by the presence
of a single true gill in the mantle cavity.
Phenacolepadidae: shell conical, thin and whitish, with a posteriorly recurved apex.
Siphonariidae: pulmonate snails with limpet-shaped shell, living on supratidal and intertidal rocks; interior
of shell with a muscle scar forming an incomplete ring, opening on the right side which shows a shallow
radial groove and often a weak lobe on the shell margin.
low radial groove
interrupting the
ring-shaped
muscle scar

single
true
gill
posteriorly
recurved
apex

ventral view of animal

dorsal view

Lottiidae

ventral view

Phenacolepadidae

Siphonariidae

Key to species of interest to fisheries occurring in the area
Remarks on key characters: the taxonomy of Indo-Pacific Patellidae remains rather poorly understood,
partly because some species are highly variable in shell characters and only few features are known to
distinguish one from another. To secure identification of the selected species, the following key includes
a number of shell characters as well as a few, simple, anatomical features.
1a. Shell semi-translucent, interior with metallic glaze; fringe of respiratory tentacles of the
animal interrupted by the head . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ® 2
1b. Shell opaque, interior porcelaneous; fringe of respiratory tentacles of the animal
continuous in the head region (Fig. 1) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Pa tella flexuosa
2a. Shell relatively large (up to 9 cm in length); sculpture of subequal, low radial riblets;
outer colour greenish brown, with dark brown radial rays more or less joined concentrically by zigzag pattern or bold V-shaped marks; aperture with a continuous brown
margin (Fig. 2) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Cellana testudinaria
2b. Shell relatively small (up to 5 cm in length); sculpture of generally unequal radial riblets,
often underlain by distinct radial folds; outer colour varying from cream with radial rays
of brown spots to dark brown with whitish rays; aperture whitish with alternating white
and brown blotches at the margin (Fig. 3) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Ce llana rota
brown
inner
margin

marginal
brown
blotches

unequal
radial
sculpture

subequal
radial
sculpture

Fig. 1 Patella flexuosa

Fig. 2 Cellana testudinaria
List of species of interest to fisheries occurring in the area
The symbol $ is given when species accounts are included.

Fig. 3 Cellana rota

$ Cellana rota (Gmelin, 1791)
$ Cellana testudinaria (Linnaeus, 1758)
$ Patella flexuosa Quoy and Gaimard, 1834
References

Christiaens, J. 1980. The limpets of Hong Kong with descriptions of seven new species and subspecies. In Proceedings

of the first international workshop on the malacofauna of Hong Kong and southern China, 23 March-8 April
1977, Hong Kong, edited by B.S. Morton. Hong Kong, Hong Kong University, pp. 61-83.
Powell, A.W.B. 1973. The Patellid limpets of the world (Patellidae). Indo-Pac. Moll., 3(15):75-206.


396

Gastropods

Cellana rota (Gmelin, 1791)
Frequent synonyms / misidentifications: Acmaea bombayana Smith, 1911; A. travancorica Preston,
1911; Cellana enneagona (Reeve, 1854); C. eudora Iredale, 1940; Helcioniscus articulatus (Reeve, 1855);
H. rota (Gmelin, 1791); Patella aster Reeve, 1855; P. luzonica Reeve, 1855 / Cellana radiata (Born,
1778).
FAO names: En - Rayed limpet; Fr - Patelle à rayons.

ventral view

(after Powell, 1973)

dorsal view

Diagnostic characters: Shell semi-translucent, rather thin, moderately elevated, with a variable shape.
Outline rounded to elongate-ovate, sometimes broadly undulated. Apex subcentral or slightly anterior.
External sculpture of numerous and generally unequal radial riblets, often underlain by distinct, broad
radial folds. Interior smooth. Colour: shell coloration highly variable. Exterior basically cream or
yellowish, with radial patterns of brown. Margin of the aperture often with alternating white and brown
blotches. Interior with a silvery glaze, mainly whitish with a brown to orange apical region, sometimes
centrally suffused with white.
Size: Maximum shell length 5 cm, commonly to 3.5 cm.
Habitat, biology, and fisheries: Common on rocky shores exposed to wave action, from mid-intertidal
zone to shallow subtidal levels. Collected for food by villagers from the Southeast Asian area to eastern
Polynesia.
Distribution: Widespread in
the Indo-West Pacific, from
Madagascar to eastern Polynesia; north to southern Japan and south to Queensland and New Caledonia.


Patellidae

397

Cellana testudinaria (Linnaeus, 1758)
Frequent synonyms / misidentifications: Helcioniscus testudinaria (Linnaeus, 1758); H. rota var.
discrepans Pilsbry, 1891; Patella insignis Dunker, 1868 / Cellana rota (Gmelin, 1791).
FAO names: En - Turtle limpet; Fr - Patelle tortue.

ventral view

(after Springsteen and Leobrera, 1986)

dorsal view

Diagnostic characters: Shell semi-translucent, solid, reaching a large size, moderately elevated, with
a regular shape. Outline rounded-ovate. Apex somewhat anterior, at about the anterior 1/3 of shell
length. External sculpture rather weak, of numerous and subequal low radial riblets. Interior smooth.
Colour: exterior of shell greenish to yellowish brown, with dark brown radial rays more or less joined
concentrically by zigzag patterns or bold V-shaped marks, within the shell substance. Aperture with a
continuous brown margin. Interior bluish silver, apical region off-white to yellowish brown.
Size: Maximum shell length 9 cm, commonly to 7.5 cm.
Habitat, biology, and fisheries: On volcanic rocks in exposed situations, mainly near and below low tide
marks. Used as food by coastal populations throughout its range.
Distribution: Eastern part of
the Indian Ocean and the
tropical West Pacific, from the
Andaman Islands to Melanesia; north to southern Japan
and south to Queensland and
New Caledonia.


398

Gastropods

Patella flexuosa Quoy and Gaimard, 1834
Frequent synonyms / misidentifications: Helcioniscus flexuosus (Quoy and Gaimard, 1834); Patella
stellaeformis Reeve, 1842; Penepatella arrecta Iredale, 1929; P. inquisitor Iredale, 1929; P. intraurea
Iredale, 1929; P. optima (Pilsbry, 1927) / None.
FAO names: En - Star-shaped limpet; Fr - Patella flexueuse.

ventral view

(after Powell, 1973)

dorsal view

Diagnostic characters: Shell opaque, highly variable in thickness and shape, moderately elevated to
almost flat. Outline irregularly rounded to elongate ovate, and roughly crenulated to polygonal. Apex
nearly central. External sculpture of 7 to 9 large radial ribs that strongly project at the margin and
numerous, scaly to spinose radial cords throughout the surface. Interior smoothish. Colour: exterior
of shell dull white, sometimes speckled with brown in the interstices of ribs. Interior porcelaneous
white, apical region white, grey, yellow or orange-brown.
Size: Maximum shell length 9.5 cm, commonly to 4 cm.
Habitat, biology, and fisheries: On rocky and coral-rock bottoms, or on stones and larger shells. Intertidal
and shallow subtidal zones. This common species is collected for food by coastal people in many parts of
the area.
Distribution: Eastern part of
the Indian Ocean and the tropical West Pacific, from the Andaman Islands to Micronesia
and eastern Polynesia; north to
southern Japan and south to
southern Queensland and New
Caledonia.

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