Thursday, April 05, 2012

Colus Ventricosus

Recently, while strolling along the beach, I picked up a 3 inch long, rather robust, but worn and broken seashell. I couldn't identify it, so I carried it home to do a little research.

Stout Colus?

It appears to be a Colus Ventricosus, otherwise known as a Stout Colus. The description in the only shell book I have that lists this shell (A Field Guide to the Shells of Our Atlantic and Gulf Coasts by Percy A. Morris) says it is a "deep-water form, found off the coast of northern Maine."

I am wondering if any of our readers can tell me if I am correct. Because of the confluence of the Gulf Stream and the Labrador Current we sometimes find shells that are more common in distant waters.

Our latest Ocracoke Newsletter is the story Alice and Theodore Rondthaler of Ocracoke. You can read it here:


  1. Anonymous10:40 AM

    hmm perhaps a bigger fish first bit into the shell to eat the animal inside? River Monster episodes (2 hour season premier) has me leery about the water thee days

  2. debbie s.11:19 AM

    I found one rather similar to that several years ago. not sure if i still have it? maybe somewhere....

  3. off the subject, but I just saw something on the airport web cam that I can't identify. It looked like a red streak coming down fron the air. It hit the water, seemed to turn over and now there is something white laying in the water. Could it be a kite or??

  4. A kite seems like a good guess.

  5. Anonymous8:40 PM

    I have many of these from my numerous visits of 30 years to Ocracoke.

  6. Anonymous8:42 PM

    I meant the shell - not a kite! HA...HA...

  7. Nat Wooding4:03 PM

    I just posted something on the Ocracoke FB page about finding a nutmeg and a lady posted a photo of a nutmeg that she found and also two shells that looked like this shell and I, too, guessed the Stout Colus. One of hers is in better condition. She has not been able to identify it. Nat Wooding