dejayM's picture

Blue-rayed Limpet

Observed: 2nd May 2013 By: dejayM
Biological Recording In ScotlandHighland Biological Recording GroupOrkney Biodiversity Records Centre
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A delightful, but small (7mm) mollusc, so like a Chiton as to be mistaken for one at first glance.
This one, near the bottom of the tide line and, unusually, on rock.
See comment

Species interactions

No interactions present.


dejayM's picture


The blue iridescent lines are remarkable, seemingly on the surface of the shell - it is a wonder we do not seek and collect them as jewellery.
The blue lines were interspersed with duller brown ones.
Variously named in books as Ansates pellucida; Helcion pellucidum; Patella laevis; Patina pellucida; Patina pellucida leavis
But it has recently gone back to Patella pellucidum, in some cases Patella pellucida - both are used in iSpot and on the Internet; neither are used on the NBN Portal (Preferred name Helcion pellucidum).
Names -

ChrisMcA's picture

I can't get it being lke a

I can't get it being lke a chiton!

dejayM's picture


I can and did. I was SO inexperienced a month ago that I'd've reckoned it could have been, well, anything. Its shape and form is chiton-like, its habit and habitat similar (in the ONLY one I've ever found) and its adherence to the rock so similar. It appears to have a skirt. That is has no 'plates' is possibly the only visual difference to a novice.
Oh it's lovely and NOW I know - remarkable thing learning.

trudy-russell's picture

I found out recently why they

I found out recently why they are not collected for jewellery, at a marine gastropod ID session recently the trainer showed us an empty one the colour was almost completely gone no where near as impressive!

Trudy Russell
Marine Advisor
Natural England

To find out about what's going on in the south west check out

Nick Upton's picture

Blue-rayed jewels

A good place to find them is on Laminaria stipes and fronds - eg although I know I know you've seen this post. My head spins on what name best to use for them these days...

Nick Upton, naturalist and photographer.

dejayM's picture


Yes, Nick, thanks.
Yes, for the 'older hands', name changes are the pits..
So time now for you to get a cottage nearer the sea as it is going to be better in Marines now this is 'out'

Nick Upton's picture


A cottage near the sea would be perfect.... Maybe one day!

Thanks for the heads up on the habitats facility. Mind you, I usually post intertidal stuff as "coastal", so better change to Marine to conform in future.

Nick Upton, naturalist and photographer.

dejayM's picture


Yes, trawl your old coastal posts, net them and cast some in the Marine.

dejayM's picture

Corrected ID

2013 was my first year in iSpot - I am now in my Marines Honours year but I have not progressed very much.
However, I now KNOW not to Force an ID by typing it myself. If the name is not in the drop-down menu in the Scientific Name box then it is not in the UKSI Index dictionary.

Regardless of that, Helcion pellucidum is still not the right name for this lovely organism - it is Patella pellucida see
I have returned to this observation in preparation for yet another one of the same.
Meantime -
a/ It would be nice if 'we' can make the new ID Likely (requires a few agreements) because the first ID panel in unformed making the Post worthless for iSpot statistics; and -
b/ check the rich and lovely comment trails in some of these posts - two pages