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Alder's necklace shell


up to 15 millimeters


yellow-brown with dark spots, often discolored to dark blue-black/gray when on the beach


other molluscs, such as snails and bivalves



  • Dut: Glazende tepelhoren
  • Lat: Lunatia alderi (Euspira poliana, E. nitida, Natica poliana, N. alderi, L. intermedia, L. poliana)
  • Eng: Alder's necklace shell
  • Ger: Glšnzende Mondschnecke, (Glšnzende Nabelschnecke)
  • Dan: Lille boresnegl
Large necklace shell, Ecomare

Alder's necklace shell

The alder's necklace shell is a predator snail, which digs itself into the sea floor. Once washed ashore, it looks a lot like the common necklace shell, only much smaller. Live specimen hardly ever wash ashore. Sometimes, the empty shells wash ashore by the thousands, often between Den Helder and the Hook of Holland. Alder's necklace shells used to be a very rare find. Thanks to sand nourishments nowadays, you seem them much more often on the beach.

  • Distribution and habitat

    Alder's necklace shells are common animals living in the bottom of the North Sea; large densities are found at several places along the coast and near the Frisian Front. The animal has no preference for a specific type of bottom: sand, mud or gravel is all fine.