Conus papilliferus Sowerby, 1834
Description: Shell light to medium in weight. Body whorl convex at top, straight or slightly concave towards base. Base of body whorl with 6-12 spiral ridges, remainder smooth or with remnant ridges. Shoulder rounded, spire flat to low, either straight or slightly convex in outline. Spire whorls with 5-10 spiral threads. Aperture wider anteriorly, outer lip convex. Background colour cream or bluish-grey, usually marked with irregular brown patches, which may coalesce into axial or spiral bands. Some specimens show spiral lines of brown dots or alternating brown and white dashes, on all or part of body whorl. Aperture violet or brown, pale at top and centre.
Size: Up to 45 mm in length, commonly 20-35 mm.
Distribution: Endemic to Australia; southern Queensland to Mallacoota, Victoria.
Habitat: Under rocks on exposed rocky shores, from low tide to at least 10 m. Moderately common.
Comparison: See C. aplustre.
Synonymy: Conus jukesii Reeve, 1848
Remarks: This species is fairly constant in shape and spire height, but quite variable in colour pattern. The brown patches vary from completely absent, giving a uniformly bluish-grey shell (Fig. 1), to heavily concentrated, giving a shell with solid brown bands on the body whorl (Fig. 2).
Fig. 1 Long Reef, Collaroy, Sydney, NSW (C.135874)
Fig. 2 Camp Cove, Sydney Harbour, NSW (C.068569)
Copyright Des Beechey 2004