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The Conus Biodiversity Website


  Conus scalptus Reeve, 1843.

Range: Sulu Sea (S.Philippines), Papua New Guinea.

Description: Small to moderately small, light to moderately light. Last whorl ventricosely conical, outline convex, less so abapically. Aperture somewhat wider at base than near shoulder. Shoulder subangulate to rounded. Spire of moderate height, outline concave to sigmoid. Larval shell probably of about 2 whorls, maximum diameter 0.7-0.8 mm. Teleoconch sutural ramps flat to slightly convex, with 1- 2 increasing to 3-4 spiral grooves. Last whorl with spiral grooves on basal third to half; ribbons grading to ribs anteriorly and weak in large specimens.

Shell Morphometry
  L 22-28 mm
  RW 0.05-0.09 g/mm
  RD 0.54-0.64
  PMD 0.76-0.85
  RSH 0.12-0.18

Ground colour white. Last whorl with rather closely spaced, yellow or reddish brown, interrupted and continuous spiral lines from base almost to shoulder and with sparse scattered small markings of the same colour. Spiral pattern underlain by pale tan or orangish brown spiral bands on adapical half and within basal third. Larval whorls grey. Later sutural ramps with yellow to reddish brown radial streaks or blotches. Aperture white.

Habitat and Habits: To about 20 m.

Discussion: In the past, C. scalptus has been confused with similarly patterned C. mucronatus (e.g. Walls, [ 1979]); for the distinctions, see the Discussion of the latter species. C. scalptus is also similar and may be closely related to C. subulatus, C. broderipii, and C. sertacinctus. C. broderipii has a larger shell, its aperture is not white, its spire is lower; its colour pattern includes 3 pronounced spiral bands of rather large markings absent in C. scalptus. C. subulatus has a narrower last whorl (RD 0.51-0.54) and an interrupted band of larger brown markings but lacks continuous brown spiral lines. For comparison with C. sertacinctus, see the discussion of that species.


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