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Cypraea erosa Linnaeus, 1758

Description: Teeth coarse, extending half way across the outer lip; short in the centre of the base, longer anteriorly and posteriorly. Base of shell white or fawn; sides marked with vertical streaks, thickening into ridges in mature specimens. Rectangular brown blotches on both sides of the shell. Dorsal surface fawn, finely speckled with white dots and sometimes marked with larger brown spots.

Size: Up to 75 mm in length, but typically about 35 mm.

Distribution: The Indo-West Pacific region, from east Africa to Hawaii, including northern Australia. In Australia, known from Houtman Abrolhos, WA, to Eden, NSW. This is the most southerly occurring of the tropical species found in eastern Australia.

Habitat: Intertidal, under stones. Abundant in the tropics, uncommon in NSW.

Figs. 1,2: Wooli, NSW (C.101600)

Fig. 3: Myora, Stradbroke Is., Queensland (DLB4996)

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Copyright Des Beechey 2000