Moonsnail

Common name
Moonsnail, Common Moonsnail, Common Northern Moonsnail


Scientific name
Euspira heros
 
 
Description
The Northern moonsnail has a rounded shell which grows up to 12cm. The shell is usually found to be grey or brown in colour and covered with a thin layer of yellow protein. The snail itself is grey with yellow tentacles and the foot is large and grey. 
 
 
 

Above are photos of a moonsnail found on Dominion Beach, Cape Breton Island.

 

Geographic Range
The moonsnail is common in the western Atlantic. It can be found from the Gulf of St. Lawrence to Delaware.

 
Habitat
Moonsnails are found coastally on both mud and sand substrates at depths of up to 360 metres.
 

Diet
The moonsnail feeds on other molluscs found in the substrate. They use their muscular foot to dig into the sand in search of prey. Once a mollusc is found for feeding, the moonsnail “drills” into the shell of the prey with its radula. Digestive enzymes are then secreted and the moonsnail sucks out the partly digested prey.

 

Additional Websites

  • To view some excellent photos of common northern moonsnails go to www.gastropod.com