Palmadusta johnsonorum Lorenz, 2002
Johnsons’ cowry, 9-19mm

Palmadusta johnsonorum is rare in the Marshalls. Most specimens are found on relatively shallow lagoon interisland and pinnacle reefs, although a couple have been seen in the Halimeda algae patches on sandy lagoon flats. Depths of observed living specimens range from about 1-15m, although empty shells have been found deeper. Although usually hidden under rocks during the day, they tend to keep their red mantles extended over the shell at all times. This species was long known here under the name Cypraea humphreysii (a misspelling of "humphreyii"), and while some authors still consider them as such, the Kwajalein specimens were recently redescribed as new due to their "bright red ground color, the two contrasting bands, the coarse regular spotting, and by the marginal spots forming tiny elevations rather than depressions as in humphreyii or the related lutea" (Lorenz & Hubert, 2000). In the actual new species description (Lorenz, 2002), this species is also said to be "characterized by shorter teeth that are not colored differently than the base (in lutea they are paler, in humphreyii they are thickened labrally and much paler)." It is so far known only from the Marshall Islands.

The one below was in a lagoon Halimeda patch on 25 January 2015.


Lorenz, F. 2002. New Worldwide Cowries. Conchbooks, Hackenheim, Germany. 292pp.

Lorenz, F. & A. Hubert. 2000. A Guide to Worldwide Cowries, 2nd edition. Conchbooks, Hackenheim, Germany. 584pp.

Created 1 April 2008
Updated 6 February 2016

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