The lightning whelk seashell is one of my favorites, with it’s stripes and long shell opening. It can grow to quite a big shell also. I have seen many of these shells, and have some in my collection, but this is the first time I have found a live mollusk inside a lightning whelk shell.
I have a little video below where you can see it moving along the sand.
This shell had a particularly white spire – top swirl – which was quite unqiue. Instead of finding a hermit crab dangling his legs out of the opening, I saw the snail! Honestly, I didn’t expect that when I saw the shell moving around on the soft sand of the river bottom. Once the snail dies, I’m betting a hermit will move in. I may come across this shell again on my adventures.
This is one of the whelks found in Florida.