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Species Guide » 12. Molluscs » Antalis vulgaris ca / es

Scientific name: Antalis vulgaris

(Da Costa, 1778)

Common Name: Cat: Ullal, Dent d'elefant

Group: 12. Molluscs

Area type: Sand dive, Shallow dive

Depth: Down to 6m

Measures: Up to 6 cm

How does it look like?

It is a kind of tubular shell, slightly curved, white or yellowish in color, open at both ends. One of the holes is larger than the other, and this is where the trilobed foot and head are located. This end faces the sand, where it digs in sandy and muddy bottoms with its foot. The mantle of the animal occupies the entire inside of the shell, the body of the organism is also elongated. It measures between 3 and 5 centimeters in length. Burying itself vertically with its foot facing the ground, it uses the smallest hole to enter the water in the current by inhaling and exhaling.

 

Where does it live?

It lives in sandy and muddy bottoms at shallow depths (up to 6 meters). Present in the Atlantic and the Mediterranean.

 

How does it feed?

With its tubular shell it digs in the mud or sand, and feeds by means of its prehensile tentacles. Water enters and is conducted to the posterior opening.

 

How does it reproduce?

It is dioecious, with separate sexes. Type of fertilization: external. With indirect development, since a trochophore larva is formed first.

 

Ia a confusion possible?

Yes, with Antalis entalis, although it has a more varied color, not only white and yellowish. In addition, the shape of the shell is very similar, tubular and curved.

 

Curiosities

· Along with those of their group, they are known as elephant teeth.

· It is difficult to observe them alive, since they can bury themselves up to 6 meters deep.

 

Taxonomy

Phylum: Mollusca; Class: Scaphopoda; Order: Dentaliida; Family: Dentaliidae; Genus: Antalis

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