The “Bednall’s Volute” is a classic rarity among the volutes and one of the most beautiful species characterised by the unique and extremely attractive chocolate-laced pattern.

One of S. Peter Dance’s 50 “Rare Shells” (1969); it was described from a shell that belonged to the Australian collector Mr William T. Bednall, its namesake. This shell remained the sole known specimen until 1893, and by early 1900s more specimens had appeared on the market; an anecdote tells that divers used to exchange each specimen caught with a bottle of brandy.

Today it is known to be a moderately rare species ranging from northern Australia (in the Arafura Sea and the Timor Sea) to eastern Indonesia. It is a predatory gastropod inhabiting shallow to moderately deep water around -10~150m deep, and usually lives on sandy bottoms.

Typical shell length around 110mm, although extreme giants may exceed 165mm. The spire height varies greatly and accounts for much of the size variation. The extent of surface sculture may also vary from rather smooth to strong and wrinkle-like; and the base colouration ranges between pure white and yellowish white. – Adapted from Chong Chen’s post

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