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Cypraea annulus Linnaeus, 1758

Description: Large teeth extend about one-third of the way across the base. Base and sides cream, top bluish white with an encircling orange band. Sides not spotted.

Size: Length up to 50 mm, commonly about 20 mm.

Distribution: Throughout the Indo-West Pacific region, from east Africa to the central Pacific Ocean, including northern Australia. In Australia, from Rottnest Island, WA, to Shellharbour, NSW.

Habitat: Intertidal, under stones and among seaweeds. Abundant in the tropics but uncommon in NSW.

Remarks: This species was used, along with Cypraea moneta, as currency until late last century. In the tropics it is only slightly less widespread than Cypraea moneta. In central NSW. it is usually collected more frequently than Cypraea moneta.

Figs. 1,2: Shellharbour, NSW (C.085705)

Fig. 3: Myora, Stradbroke Is., Queensland (DLB4995)

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Copyright Des Beechey 2000