DavidHowdon's picture

Mega-shell

Observed: 2nd October 2013 By: DavidHowdon
Amateur Entomologists' SocietyLondon Natural History SocietySelborne Society
DavidHowdon’s reputation in InvertebratesDavidHowdon’s reputation in InvertebratesDavidHowdon’s reputation in InvertebratesDavidHowdon’s reputation in InvertebratesDavidHowdon’s reputation in Invertebrates
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Description:

Found this odd shell in a garden (where it was obviously being used ornamentally). Seemed very large. Any idea what it once was?
To give an idea of scale the lens-cap shown is about 65mm in diameter.

Identifications
  • Giant Mexican Limpet (Patella mexicana)
    Confidence: It's likely to be this, but I can't be certain.
  •  
    Likely ID
    Giant Mexican Limpet (Scutellastra mexicana)
    Confidence: It's likely to be this, but I can't be certain.
Species interactions

No interactions present.

Comments

DavidHowdon's picture

Thanks

Is it collected for ornamental purposes (as this one was being used) or for food?

steve_t's picture

For Food

Apparently it was a favourite ingredient in Ceviche, a raw sea food dish from Central and South America. It seems from this website that it may now be extinct (http://research.calacademy.org/ccg/staff/bsimison). Also, its correct scientific name should be Scutellastra mexicana (http://www.marinespecies.org/aphia.php?p=taxdetails&id=456684) so I have added a new identification to reflect this.