Archerd Shell Collection > Shell Classes > Gastropoda > Marginellidae

Family: Marginellidae (Marginellas, Margin Shells)

Shells are ovate (egg-shaped), smooth and highly polished, white or brightly colored, and they always have prominent columellar folds. The spire is usually rounded off and short, or sunken below the enameled surface. Much like the cowries or the ovulas, the mantle flaps cover the shell, protecting its high polish. Most species are less than 2.0 cm, although a few larger species from West Africa may exceed 2 in (5 cm) in size (Keen, 1958).
The Marginellidae are generally tropical and live in sand, under rocks or in algae beds. They are abundant mainly in West African, Caribbean, and Western Pacific waters. Most are believed to prey on other molluscs. However, Orlin (2007) has reported direct observations by several authors who directly observed certain Marginellidae species to have attached and directly sucked the blood of specific fish species.

Class: Gastropoda
Clade: Neogastropoda
Superfamily: Muricoidea
Family: Marginellidae
Major Genera
  • Genus: Afrivoluta
  • Genus: Cystiscus
  • Genus: Hyalina
  • Genus: Marginella

Marginella elegans (Gmelin, 1791)
Elegant Marginella

Marginella desjardini (Marche-Marchad, 1957)
Desjardin's Marginella
Uncommon, Ivory Coast

Archerd Shell Collection > Shell Classes > Gastropods > Marginellas