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Coriophora granosa (Pease, 1870)

Description: Shell relatively small, sinistral. Protoconch plankotrophic, of 5-6 whorls, covered with fine, crisp, axial riblets, and a subcentral spiral thread. Teleoconch whorls with 4 strongly beaded spiral cords and axial costae; spirals 1 and 3 commence immediately after protoconch, spiral 3 on 4th to 7th teleoconch whorl. Penultimate whorl with spirals 1 and 3 strong, about same strength, spiral 2 much weaker. Spiral 4 slightly exposed on spire whorls.  Axial costae insignificant; nodules offset between spirals 1 and 3. Another 2 weak spirals on base (numbered 5 and 6). Outer lip of aperture flared, anterior siphonal canal short and upturned, posterior canal U-shaped. Colour fawn to orange brown, nodules lighter.

Size: Adult shells 3.2 - 6.1 mm in length.

Distribution: Tropical Indo-West Pacific. In eastern Australia, from off Cairns, Qld, southwards to Sydney, NSW.

Habitat: "Common on reefs throughout the tropical and subtropical Western Pacific" (Marshall, 1983, p. 46). Uncommon in beach washup in NSW.

Comparison: This is characterised by only 2 spiral cords on most spire whorls, with spiral 3 not developing until late in growth, and by the offset arrangement of nodules between spirals 2 and 3.

Synonymy: Mastonia aegle Jousseaume, 1884  and Mastonia queenslandica Laseron, 1958 are previously recognised synonyms.

Remarks: Marshall placed great emphasis on the colour of this species, but among the dead and faded specimens in the Museum collection colour is not particularly distinctive.

Figs. 1, 2: Wilson Is, Capricorn Group, Qld (C.111378)


Copyright Des Beechey 2015