Raphitoma purpurea, copyright Pierre Corbrion.

Belongs within: Raphitomidae.

Raphitoma histrix
Published 9 June 2014

The shell in the photo above (from G. & Ph. Poppe) belongs to Raphitoma histrix (Bellardi 1847)*, a small marine gastropod (the shell shown is just over 6 mm long). Raphitoma histrix was first described as a fossil from the Pliocene of north-western Italy, but the name has also been used for Recent shells from the Mediterranean and western Africa. Rolán et al. (1998) implied (but did not state) that the identity of the modern specimens could do with a double-check. Raphitoma histrix is found in soft-bottomed, reasonably calm waters.

*There has been a bit of confusion over the exact name for this species. Many authors have referred to it as ‘Raphitoma hystrix (Cristofori & Jan 1832)’. However, as noted by Pusateri et al. (2012), Cristofori & Jan’s name was a nomen nudum (meaning that it lacked an accompanying description), making it not validly published. The name was not validated until it was used by Bellardi (1847), who used the spelling ‘histrix‘.

Raphitoma histrix is the type species of the genus Raphitoma, which is in turn the type genus of the subfamily Raphitominae. Past authors have classified this genus within the family Turridae, and the Raphitominae broadly correspond with the group that has often been called the ‘Daphnellinae’. However, with the recognition that the old ‘Turridae’ was largely just a dumping ground for less differentiated members of the superfamily Conoidea, the Raphitominae is now usually treated as part of the Conidae, and so a member of the same family as the cone shells. Like other members of this family, including other species of Raphitoma, R. histrix is probably a predator, possibly feeding on other marine invertebrates such as worms.

Systematics of Raphitoma
<==Raphitoma Bellardi 1847BR17 [incl. Cordieria Monterosato 1884 non Rouault 1848P66]
    |--R. hystrix (De Cristofori & Jan 1832)RO-SF98 [=Pleurotoma hystrixP66, *R. histrix Bellardi 1847RO-SF98]
    |--R. bedoyai Rolán, Otero-Schmitt & Fernandes 1998RO-SF98
    |--R. belliana Finlay 1927 [=Pleurotoma laevis Bell 1890 nec Bellardi 1848 nec Hutton 1873]F27
    |--R. bernardoi Rolán, Otero-Schmitt & Fernandes 1998RO-SF98
    |--R. bicolor (Risso 1826) [=Pleurotoma bicolor, Philbertia bicolor]RO-SF98
    |--R. christfriedi Rolán, Otero-Schmitt & Fernandes 1998BC01
    |--R. cordieri (Payraudeau 1826)RO-SF98 [=Pleurotoma cordieriRO-SF98, *Cordieria cordieriP66, Philbertia cordieriP66]
    |--R. corimbensis Rolán, Otero-Schmitt & Fernandes 1998BC01
    |--R. echinata (Brocchi 1814)RO-SF98
    |--R. hispidula (Bellardi 1847)RO-SF98
    |--‘Philbertia’ horrida (Monterosato 1844)O96
    |--R. kabuli Rolán, Otero-Schmitt & Fernandes 1998BC01
    |--R. laviae (Philippi 1844)O96
    |--R. leufroyi (Michaud 1828)RO-SF98 (see below for synonymy)
    |--R. linearis (Montagu 1803) [incl. R. linearis var. aequalis (Jeffreys 1867)]RO-SF98
    |--R. mirabilis (Locard 1892) [=Clathurella mirabilis, Philbertia mirabilis]RO-SF98
    |--R. ‘mirabilis’ (Pallary 1904) non Clathurella mirabilis Locard 1892RO-SF98
    |--R. nebulaPP64
    |--R. pseudohystrix (Sykes 1906) [=Clathurella pseudohystrix]P66
    |--R. purpurea (Montagu 1803)RO-SF98 [=Murex purpureusRO-SF98, Philbertia purpureusP66]
    |--R. rubroapicata (Smith 1885)PK11
    `--R. zelotypa Rolán, Otero-Schmitt & Fernandes 1998BC01

Raphitoma leufroyi (Michaud 1828)RO-SF98 [=Pleurotoma leufroyiRO-SF98, *Leufroyia leufroyiP66, Philbertia leufroyiP66; incl. Clavatula boothii Wood 1848P66]

*Type species of generic name indicated


[BR17] Bouchet, P., J.-P. Rocroi, B. Hausdorf, A. Kaim, Y. Kano, A. Nützel, P. Parkhaev, M. Schrödl & E. E. Strong. 2017. Revised classification, nomenclator and typification of gastropod and monoplacophoran families. Malacologia 61 (1–2): 1–526.

[BC01] Boyko, C. B., & J. R. Cordeiro. 2001. Catalog of Recent type specimens in the Division of Invertebrate Zoology, American Museum of Natural History. V. Mollusca, part 2 (class Gastropoda [exclusive of Opisthobranchia and Pulmonata], with supplements to Gastropoda [Opisthobranchia], and Bivalvia). Bulletin of the American Museum of Natural History 262: 1–170.

[F27] Finlay, H. J. 1927. New specific names for austral Mollusca. Transactions and Proceedings of the New Zealand Institute 57: 488–533.

[O96] Oliverio, M. 1996. Contrasting developmental strategies and speciation in N.E. Atlantic prosobranchs: a preliminary analysis. In: Taylor, J. D. (ed.) Origin and Evolutionary Radiation of the Mollusca pp. 261–266. Oxford University Press: Oxford.

[PP64] Peres, J. M., & J. Picard. 1964. Nouveau manuel de bionomie benthique de la mer Mediterranee. Recueil des Travaux de la Station Marine d’Endoume, Bulletin 31 (27): 5–137.

[P66] Powell, A. W. B. 1966. The molluscan families Speightiidae and Turridae: an evaluation of the valid taxa, both Recent and fossil, with lists of characteristic species. Bulletin of the Auckland Institute and Museum 5: 1–184, pls 1–23.

[PK11] Puillandre, N., Y. I. Kantor, A. Sysoev, A. Couloux, C. Meyer, T. Rawlings, J. A. Todd & P. Bouchet. 2011. The dragon tamed? A molecular phylogeny of the Conoidea (Gastropoda). Journal of Molluscan Studies 77: 259–272.

Pusateri, F., R. Giannuzzi-Savelli & M. Oliverio. 2012. Revisione delle Raphitomidae mediterranee 1: su Raphitoma contigua (Monterosato, 1884) e Raphitoma spadiana n. sp., specie sorelle (Gastropoda, Conoidea). Sociedad Espanola de Malacologia—Iberus 30 (1): 41–52.

[RO-SF98] Rolán, E., J. Otero-Schmitt & F. Fernandes. 1998. The family Turridae s.l. (Mollusca, Gastropoda) in Angola (West Africa), 1. Subfamily Daphnellinae. Iberus 16 (1): 95–118.

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