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Species / Canarium Haemastoma

Canarium Haemastoma


Original Description of Strombus haemastoma by Sowerby (2nd), 1842, p. 31:

  • "T. ovali, striata, longitudinaliter plicata; apertura rosea, striata; labio externo sinu valido."
  • "A small white striated species, with longitudinal ribs and a purplish pink striated aperture."

Strombus haemastoma Sowerby2nd, 1842, pl. VII, fig. 51

Types: "The type is presumably in the British Museum of Natural History, London" (Abbott, 1960, p. 82)

Locus typicus: "Until examined and compared with better specimens from both the Indian and Pacific Oceans, it is best that a type locality not to be designated." (Abbott, 1960, p. 82)

History and Synonymy

Canarium haemastoma (Sowerby II, 1842: 31, pl. 7 fig. 51) (Strombus)

  • ?Syn.: Strombus scalariformis Duclos, 1833: pl. 28 [15 Sept. 1833]


Strombus scalariformis Duclos, 1833, cl. V, pl. 28

  • Original Description of Strombus scalariformis by Duclos, 1833:
    • "H. testa turrita, scalariformi, transversim striata et longitudinaliter costulata. Colore fulva, immaculata, columella concava, fauce aurorea, labro intus striata. Long. 22 mill."
    • Petite coquille turriculée, scalariforme, ornée de stries transversales extrèmement fines et chargée de petites côtes longitudinales : couleur jaunatre sans aucune maculation ; columelle concave, striée dans toute son étendue, ainsi que l’intérieur du bord droit, qui est petit et tranchant. Bouche aurore. Rarissime. Habite les mers de la Chine."
  • Strombus scalariformis is treated as freak form of Canarium haemastoma:


Strombus haemastoma; in Chenu, 1843, pl. 4, fig. 17,18

Strombus scalariformis in Chenu, 1843, pl. 4, fig. 9,10

Strombus scalariformis in Kiener, 1843


Strombus haemastoma in Reeve, 1850, Strombus, pl. 5, fig, 5 a, b


Abbott, 1960, p. 82 reported Strombus haemastoma from:

  • Indian Ocean Islands: Mauritius (ANSP, purchased from Sowerby post 1850; USNM, ex N. Pike and Quadras Collection; MCZ from C. Decort). Réunion (Deshayes, 1863, p. 114, no. 378)
  • Australia: Bird Island (Queensland?) (USNM)
  • Ellice Islands: Ujae Atoll; Wotho Atoll; Namu Id., Bikini Atoll; 3 mi west of Jieroru Id., Eniwetok Atoll (all dead, all USNM).
  • Cook Islands: Rarotonga, rare alive (A. Garrett, MCZ)


Kreipl et al., 1999, p. 35 reported Strombus (Canarium) haemastoma from:

  • Mauritius and Réunion
  • Micronesia
  • from the Marshall Islands to the Cook Islands, including the Fijis
  • Guam Island, Mariana Islands, Micronesia, USA, North Pacific Ocean
  • Solomons

They showed on plate 63 specimens from

  • fig. 1: Solomon Island, 23 mm
  • fig. 2: Mauritius, 25 mm
  • fig. 3: Mauritius, 18 mm
  • fig. 4: Guam Island, 15 mm

2013 Liverani, 2013, p. 29 added to the range given by Kreipl et al., 1999:

  • "Also found in Queensland, Australia and French Polynesia"


Jeanette & Scott Johnson about Canarium haemastoma on Kwajalein Atoll:

  • "Canarium haemastoma are mostly relatively rare in the Marshalls, but when found usually occur in groups. They can be found buried in the top layer of coarse sand or fine rubble in seaward reef sand patches from about 8 to 25m depth, or they can be found in lagoon Halimeda beds or even crawling on the surface of the sand in 6 to 13m. Occasional specimens have been observed in sand patches on large flat-topped lagoon pinnacles. While the Latin name technically means blood mouth, there is another, better known stromb commonly called the blood-mouth conch, so we will leave this one without a common name. Besides, the animal must have been named from a faded specimen since the aperture coloration is more purplish black than red in living animals, and only fades to red or orange long after the animal has died. So the name is kind of a misnomer. This is a smaller species, ranging up to about 30mm in length."

All Photos of Kwajalein Atoll-specimens courtesy Scott & Jeanette Johnson, Kwajalein Atoll

Specimens from private collections

Canarium haemastoma (Sowerby, 1842); North Tipalao Point, Guam Island, Mariana Islands, Micronesia, USA, North Pacific Ocean; in shallow sand pockets, 35 feet (11 m), Scuba; t:17,9 mm, b:13,1 mm; Coll. Richard Salisbury

Canarium haemastoma (Sowerby, 1842); subadult; North Tipalao Point, Guam Island, Mariana Islands, Micronesia, USA, North Pacific Ocean; in shallow sand pockets, 35 feet (11 m), Scuba; 12,1 mm; Coll. Richard Salisbury

Canarium haemastoma (Sowerby, 1842); Orote’ Cliffs, Guam Island, Mariana Islands, Micronesia, USA, North Pacific Ocean; 60-90 ft in silt, in sand trenches; 1980; t: 18,3 mm, b: 18,7 mm; Coll. Paul Merrill

Canarium haemastoma (Sowerby, 1842); New Caledonia, Melanesia; 16 mm; Coll. Franck Leterrier

Canarium haemastoma (Sowerby, 1842); Olango Island, Cebu Province, Central Visayas Region, Philippines; 6 m. - GUPHIL I - 2005, HYPO; 13,6 mm; Coll. G.T. Poppe no. 177941

  • also pictured in Kronenberg in Poppe, 2008, pl. 218, fig. 2a, 2b

Canarium haemastoma (Sowerby, 1842); Port Lewis, Mauritius; in muddy sand, dredged at 33 mm; 21,0 mm; Coll. Frank Nolf no. 05894


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