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Sea Shell - Atlantic Triton

 Charonia variegata 
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A fine art photograph by Ruth Burke. 

This photograph was taken on a Texas Gulf Coast beach.  

Triton is the common name given to a number of very large sea snails, predatory marine gastropods in the genus Charonia. The name "triton" is also often applied to other, much smaller sea snails of the genus Cymatium, within the same family, Ranellidae.

Tritons are named after the Greek god Triton, who was the son of Poseidon, god of the sea.

The shell of the giant triton, Charonia tritonis (Linnaeus, 1758), which lives in the Indo-Pacific faunal zone, can grow to over half a metre (20 inches) in length. One slightly smaller but still very large species, Charonia variegata (Lamarck, 1816), lives in the western Atlantic, from North Carolina to Brazil.

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