Cassidae

Casmaria ponderosa

(Link, 1807)

Casmaria ponderosa usually differs from C. erinaceus (Linnaeus) in having two rows of prominent square blotches, one just below the suture, the other on the base of the body whorl.

Adult shell 20 to 55 mm in length, solid, glossy, ovate-elongate, with a smoothish, rounded columella, with a moderately-developed, black-striped varix, with one or two rows of denticles on the outer lip, and with a subsutural and basal spiral row of squarish chestnut splotches on the last whorl. Whorls 8. Nuclear whorls 3, the first very small and stained brown, the remaining two rapidly increasing in size, glossy, white and smooth. The whorl dips slightly and forms a break in the growth just before the postnuclear whorls begin. Body whorl well-rounded and with a smooth or axially noduled shoulder. Color of shell white, tan, bluish white or cream with a spiral row of about 7 to 9 chestnut squarish spots just below the suture and on the base of the body whorl. Between these two rows may be 3 weak spiral tan bands or 3 rows of weak, squarish spots. In smooth, light-weight specimens, the varix bears 5 to 12 small, sharp denticles, but in noduled, heavy specimens there is a second row of more numerous, smaller denticles slightly within the aperture. A former varix is very rarely present. The top or posterior end of the varix is without a chestnut stripe, but below are 7 to 10 variously-sized chestnut to blackish bands. Columella shield solid, white, rounded, smoothish or with numerous spiral wrinkles. Interior of aperture white to light- brown. Umbilicus sealed over; false umbilicus absent. Siphonal canal short and tipped with a chestnut splotch. Operculum one-fourth the length of the aperture; fan-shaped; narrow, and translucent-yellow.

[Indo Pacific Mollusca, Vol 2 No 9. 1968. p12-710]

off Mooloolabah

On sand, mud and rubble.
80-120 metres depth
Trawled.
45 mm

Collected 2002

Hutchinson Shoal
off northern Moreton Island

found dead in sand in 15m of water near coral reef and large sand areas
23 mm

Collected 2007