Victor Dan's Delphinula (Angaria vicdani) - ROM2004_861_9

Victor Dan's delphinula, Angaria vicdani

Victor Dan's Delphinula (Angaria vicdani)

Geography: Phillipines; Pacific Ocean
length=4.0; width=5.0 cm
(measurements include the spines)
    • Attributes
    • Objects
    • Taxonomy
    • KingdomAnimalia
    • PhylumMollusca
    • ClassGastropoda
    • OrderArchaeogastropoda
    • FamilyTurbinidae
    • GenusAngaria
    • SpecificEpithetvicdani
Object number: ROMIZ M12441
Not on view
Description"Here in these shells we see the housing of the life of the sea. It is the housing of a lower order of life, but it is a housing with exactly what we lack—inspired form. In this collection of houses of hundreds of small beings, who themselves built these houses, we see a quality we call invention. The beauty of their variations is never finished." Frank Lloyd Wright. The elaborate architecture of the Angaria vicdani is an excellent example of “form” growing out of the need for (or “inspiration” of) function. In nature, the complex and extremely elegant spines of this delphinula are usually completely overgrown with corals and other invertebrates. The outgrowths provide protection from predation by increasing the area on which marine organisms such as sponges, tube worms, hydroids, and bryozoans may settle and grow. Such camouflaged molluscs are not recognized as potential prey because they are not only difficult to see, but also hard to smell or taste. Mollusc shells display an infinite variety of colours, patterns, shapes, and sculpturing and their beauty has captivated humans from ancient times to the present. Hours of painstaking cleaning is required to expose the beautiful design of this shell. The shell itself is grown by secretion from a specialized area of the animal’s upper surface known as the mantle. This uncommon species is found in the southern Philippines and resides offshore in deep water. It reaches a diameter of 5 cm, including the spines.
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