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Cypraea asellus Linnaeus, 1758

Tags: cowry | Cypraea asellus | mollusk



Photo by Chao-Shyh-Min


Cypraea asellus is a small cowry species with a shell length measuring between 2 and 3cm. The shell is pear or egg-shaped with blunted ends and a rounded back. It is white with three dark brown bands. The sides and underside are white as well, with a hint of the colored bands running from the dorsal surface. The species inhabits coral reefs and rocky sea bottoms from the intertidal zone to waters up to a depth of 20m.

Cypraea asellus is quite rare and is mainly found in the Indo-West Pacific region, including the Philippines, China's Hainan and Xisha islands, south of the Boso Peninsula in Japan, Australia's Coral Bay, and between West Australia (WA) and the middle of New South Wales (NSW). In Taiwan, the species has been found in the north, east and south at Keelung, the Northeast Cape, Pingtung, Siaoliouciou, Penghu and Nansha's Taiping Island.


National Museum of Natural Science (The Digital Museum of Nature & Culture)