Home - Species of the Month Archive - May 2009.

Species of the Month May 2009

Urosalpinx cinerea (c) Jack Sewell

Common name: American oyster drill

Scientific name: Urosalpinx cinerea

A type of sea snail


Key Features:

  • Up to 4 cm high and 2 cm broad
  • Shell with sharply pointed spire
  • Yellowish/grey, often with brown colouration
  • Long, open, siphonal canal
  • Rounded whorls with rounded vertical ribs crossed by thinner spiral ridges

Where to look:

Common in estuaries but also on the lower shore and subtidally, usually on rocks or bivalve reefs. Eggs are laid higher up on the shore.


East coast of the USA. Introduced with oysters.


Preys heavily on oysters and other bivalves