Stigmaulax guppiana

moon snail | caracol de luna or cachete

moon snail shell

Shell is thick, strongly inflated, and with a low spire. Sculpture consists of widely spaced axial (parallel to growth lines) grooves. Umbilicus is very wide, but partly obscured by the callus (lobe shape).

Size: 25-35 mm.

Ecology: inhabits shallow-offshore marine (10-100 m) waters, plowing through sand near sediment surface or crawling along sediment surface; predatory; once a borehole is complete the snail uses its proboscis to consume the flesh of the prey.

Geological range: Middle Miocene-Late Pliocene (16-3 million years ago).

Geographic distribution: Caribbean – Panama, Colombia, Dominican Republic, Florida, and Venezuela; Pacific – Panama, Colombia, and Ecuador.