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Liotella pulcherrima (Henn & Brazier, 1894)

Description: Shell minute, spire usually level with plane of last whorl, occasionally slightly above, last whorl rapidly descending. Protoconch smooth, low. Teleoconch up to 2 rounded whorls, suture deep. Axial sculpture of narrow, low ribs, extending from suture into umbilicus, 30-50 on last whorl. Interspaces between axials about twice rib width, with numerous, evenly spaced, crisp spiral threads. Umbilicus open, wide. Aperture circular, margin entire, not thickened or with normal rib. Shell colourless transparent when fresh, becoming opaque with age.

Size: Up to 1.4 mm in width.

Distribution: Known from Port Stephens, NSW, southwards to Malacoota, Victoria.

Habitat: Of the available material, one lot is dredged in Middle Harbour at 3.5 - 9 m, while the rest are from beach washup from harbour and ocean beaches. Common.

Comparison: This is similar to L. kilcundae, but the spire is a little higher, the last whorl descends rapidly, the spiral sculpture is more  defined and there are more axial ribs.

Figs. 1,2,3: Collaroy Beach, NSW (C.215998)

Figs. 4,5: Collaroy Beach, NSW (C.215998) (Photo Sue Lindsay, Australian Museum)


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Copyright Des Beechey 2009