Razor clams, shark eyes, knobby conchs … do you know your Delaware shells? Take a look at some local examples from the Museum’s collection of more than two million shells. Use this guide to identify shells for your own collection! Many hobbyists enjoy picking up nature’s curios on the beach for home displays or creative shell art. Serious collectors note the date and location where each shell was found, instantly making the shell scientifically valuable to researchers. Grab a bucket, hit the beach, and happy hunting!
Source: MAS Bulletin/University of Delaware Sea Grant College Program, A Guide to Field Identification: Seashells of North America by R. Tucker Abbott, DMNH collection.
One of the largest shells found on Delaware beaches. White, violet, and brown shells grow up to nine inches long. Eats other mollusks on the bottom of the ocean by wrapping its foot around bivalves and using its own shell to pry open prey and insert its mouth parts.
Rough, white shells have a large purplish spot on the inside that marks where the muscle that held the two valves together was. Their shape depends on what they were attached to and how crowded the environment was. Females can produce up to 100 million eggs at one spawning.