Ecphora gardnerae gardnerae

Ecphora gardnerae
Temporal range: Miocene
An apertural view of a shell of Ecphora gardnerae gardnerae, drawn by J. C. McConnell[1]
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Mollusca
Class: Gastropoda
(unranked): clade Caenogastropoda
clade Hypsogastropoda
clade Neogastropoda
Superfamily: Muricoidea
Family: Muricidae
Genus: Ecphora
Species: E. gardnerae
Binomial name
Ecphora gardnerae
Wilson, 1987

Ecphora gardnerae is a species of fossil predatory sea snail, an extinct marine gastropod mollusk in the family Muricidae, the rock snails.


Subspecies include:

  • Ecphora gardnerae gardnerae, the nominate subspecies

Geological history

This species of large carnivorous sea snail lived during the Miocene epoch, and became extinct more than five million years ago. The shells are found as fossils in Maryland and Virginia.

This species was previously known as Ecphora quadricostata, but that name is now restricted to a species which is found from Pliocene strata in Virginia to Florida.

The Miocene species found in Maryland has been assigned to a different taxon, Ecphora gardnerae.[2]

Life habits

As with most other muricids, Ecphora sea snails bored holes through the hard shells of other mollusks, usually bivalves, or sometimes other snails, including other, smaller Ecphoras, in order to feed on their soft insides using a toothed, ribbonlike appendage (common to almost all gastropods) known as a radula.[3]

Commemoration of the fossil

In March 1994, Dr. Eric Seifter testified before the Maryland Legislature that the classification of the Maryland State Fossil, Ecphora quadricostata was invalid (quadricostata is not actually found in Maryland) and needed to be changed to Ecphora gardnerae gardnerae.[3] The fossil was named for geologist Julia Anna Gardner.[4]


External links

  • Maryland Geological Survey: Maryland's Official State Fossil Shell

This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.