Thursday, April 9, 2009

Baler volute

Goal for the week 15hrs

The baler volute (melo melo) is a very large snail found in Indonesia. They are specialized predators of other predatory gastropods. Odd for a snail they can produce pearls when bits of sand get stuck in their shells. The pearls are large, but lack nacre and their color tends to fade over time. The baler volute is also getting to be quite threatened particularly in Singapore among other places so hopefully the pearls will not catch on.  They are also eaten as a delicacy. They are called baler volutes because their shells were traditionally used to bail water out of boats. 

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