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Fusitriton oregonensis

fusitriton oregonensis, fusitriton oregonensis edible
The Oregon hairy triton, Fusitriton oregonensis, is a species of large predatory sea snail, a marine gastropod mollusk in the family Ranellidae, the tritons

The snail was given its specific name oregonensis meaning "of Oregon" to honor the Oregon Territory by conchologist John Howard Redfield in 1846123

The Oregon hairy triton was declared the state seashell of Oregon in 1989 by the 65th Legislative Assembly4


  • 1 Distribution
  • 2 Shell description
  • 3 Habitat
  • 4 Life habits
  • 5 References


The Oregon hairy triton is native to the northwestern coast of North America The shells are found from Alaska to California, as well as in northern Japan The shells often wash up on the coast during high tides12

Shell descriptionedit

The shells grow from three to five inches long5 The shell is light brown in color and is covered with gray-brown bristly periostracum, hence the name "hairy" The shell is an elongate cone with six whorls or turns around a central axis

Apertural view of a juvenile with operculum and contracted soft parts visible Abapertural view of the shell


This species is common subtidally6

Life habitsedit

Scanning electron microscopic image of immature parasperm lancet infertile sperm morph of Fusitriton oregonensis showing the tail brush still present, which later develops into part of the body of the parasperm It is producing when sperm competition occurs

Little is known of the snail's feeding habits, but they are believed to feed on other mollusks,5 ascidians "sea squirts",7 and more rarely, sea urchins8 The species also holds the record for longest larval development period of any marine invertebrate, able to delay metamorphosis for over 4 years until presented with appropriate habitat9 Under laboratory conditions, the larvae showed no signs of senescence at that point According to some authorities, four years is long enough to drift completely across the Pacific Ocean


  1. ^ a b State Symbols: Mushroom to Tree, Oregon Blue Book
  2. ^ a b "Fusitriton oregonensis" Gastropodscom Archived from the original on 2007-09-27 Retrieved 2007-08-16 
  3. ^ "Harvard University Index of Botanists" Retrieved 2007-08-16 
  4. ^ Chapter 186 — State Emblems; State Boundary Archived March 11, 2007, at the Wayback Machine 2005 Oregon Revised Statutes
  5. ^ a b "eNature: Oregon Hairy Triton" eNature Archived from the original on 2007-09-29 Retrieved 2007-08-16 
  6. ^ Washington State University Extension, Intertidal Organisms EZ-ID Guides: Fusitriton oregonensis Oregon triton
  7. ^ Young, CM January 1985 "Abundance patterns of subtidal solitary ascidians in the San Juan Islands, Washington, as influenced by food preferences of the predatory snail Fusitriton oregonensis" Marine Biology 84 3: 309–321 doi:101007/BF00392501 Retrieved 2007-08-16 
  8. ^ Duggins, David O December 1983 "Starfish Predation and the Creation of Mosaic Patterns in a Kelp-Dominated Community" Ecology 64 6: 1610–1619 JSTOR 1937514 doi:102307/1937514 
  9. ^ Strathmann, Megumi F; Richard R Strathmann October 1, 2007 "An Extraordinarily Long Larval Duration of 45 Years from Hatching to Metamorphosis for Teleplanic Veligers of Fusitriton oregonensis" The Biological Bulletin 213 2: 152–159 JSTOR 25066631 PMID 17928522 doi:102307/25066631 Retrieved 2009-05-04 

fusitriton oregonensis, fusitriton oregonensis edible

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Fusitriton oregonensis

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