Tonna chinensis (Dillwyn, 1817)
Description: Sutures not impressed. Sculptured with about 21 broad, low spiral ribs, with intervening grooves one-fifth to one-third of rib width. In mature shells, inner edge of outer lip thickened and lirate, with a liration corresponding to each groove on the outer surface. Colour very variable; uniform fawn, or fawn with irregular brown zigzags, or fawn with some spiral ribs alternating white and brown.
Size: Up to 98 mm in length, but NSW specimens are usually immature and rarely exceed 50 mm.
Distribution: Indo-West Pacific; in Australia, Cape Leeuwin, WA, to Eden, NSW.
Habitat: Subtidal, in sand. Uncommon in NSW.
Comparison: In this species the ribs are wide with narrow interspaces, and the sutures are not impressed. In the two common NSW species, T. cerevisina and T. tetracotula, the sutures are deeply impressed and the interspaces relatively wide.
Synonym: Parvitonna perselecta Iredale, 1931
Figs. 1,2: Off Tweed Heads, NSW (C.104690)
Copyright Des Beechey 2000