Junonia, alphabet cone, tiger cowrie, conch

Junonia, Alphabet Cone, Tiger Cowrie, Queen Conch internet

This is an 8 x 10 painting. The Queen Conch shell is one I have owned for years!  Conchs were used by the Haitians to summon voodoo spirits.  The Florida Keys were a major source of Queen Conchs until the 1970s, but harvesting them is now prohibited.  The cone snails are not friendly fellows.  They have over 100 toxins in their body and the venom is similar to curare, used by natives to make poisonous arrows.  There have been over 30 recorded cases of death by cone snail. For more information about this painting click here.

Cyetulus Spindle, Murex, Harp Seashells

Cyetulus Spindle, Murex, Harp internet

This is another 8 x 8 canvas panel that would go quite well with the painting shown last week!  The animals that inhabited these shells are commonly known as sea snails and part of the phylum Molluska in the animal kingdom.  These creatures evolved about 500 million years ago and there are more than 100,000 known species.  There is no definitive catalogue of all of them yet. For more information about this painting, click here.

Barnicles, Tiger Cowrie Murex & Scallop

Barnicles, Tiger Cowie, Murex, Scallop internet

More seashells!   I love the brown, rust, white and tans of these different shells.  This is an 8 x 8 canvas panel.  Cowrie shells have an interesting history.  For hundreds of years they were used as money in parts of Africa.  Slave traders used cowrie shells to trade for human slaves.  In the 1680’s, a slave cost 10,000 shells.  In 1770 the cost for an adult male slave was 150,000 cowrie shells. For more information about this painting, click here.