Auckland Shell Club
Heather welcomed everyone, including new members Pat and Julia.
Our planned speaker for the evening, Patricia Langford, was unable to get there, so attendees gave impromptu talks on subjects of their choosing.
Margaret began with a report on finding many Nassurius burchardi in Patau Bay, Whangarei. They were there in densities of about six hundred per square metre.
Julia, originally from Portugal talked about shelling in Portugal. She brought in an interesting tray of shells she had collected and two interesting shell books. She has also lived in Africa.
Pat talked about her collection of shells in South Africa, and how she was advised that she couldn't bring them into N.Z.!!?
Mike talked about shelling on Niue Island where he spent some of his childhood. He visits Niue at least once a year, and says it is not too expensive. Maybe we should organise a Club Trip there?
Heather spoke about Martin in the Philippines being gifted a Cassis cornuta and bringing it back into N.Z.
Jack retold a story about customs phoning him for advice on somebody bringing in a fossilised clam shell. Jack was able to confirm thst it was indeed a fossilised clam shell.
Alan then told us a story about Black Coral in Papua New Guinea.
Finally, Margaret read us an amazing article from an old club newsletter about a Mr Booth collecting 1500 paper nautilus shells from Mayor Island over a period of three days. He had sacks of them on the beach! Unfortunately there was no date.
Anna Berthelsen was our guest speaker for the evening.
For her PhD, Anna is conducting a three year study of the interactions between coralline turf and its associated fauna. Anna is based at the Auckland University campus at the Leigh Marine Laboratory, and does her field work within the Goat Island Marine Reserve and also north of the reserve. This area is rich in coralline turf, however coralline turf is common throughout the world from the tropics to the poles.
Coralline species can be found in almost all marine habitats where there is sunlight and something to attach to. So far, five New Zealand species have been named and two genera still need to be resolved in the future.
They are classified into two main groups - geniculate (jointed) and non-geniculate (not jointed). Geniculate species are frilly in appearance, consisting of fine segmented branches that often form a dense turf in intertidal and deeper waters. Non-geniculate species appear as pink encrustation on rocks and other hard surfaces. These are the ones that cause us shell collectors so much trouble!
Initially it was thought that these things were animals, and it wasn’t until the mid 1800s that they were identified as photosynthising plants.
A large number and variety of small mobile invertebrates live on the coralline turf, in densities of up to 100,000 per square meter. The most common of these are Polychaetes, Ostracods, Pycnogonids, Arthropods, Crustaceans, and of course Molluscs. Anna collects and analyses samples of all these micro-organisms to determine their interaction with the coralline turf. Identifying the huge number of species is in itself quite an effort, and Shell Club attendees were able to provide some assistance with that.
We thank Anna for her most interesting presentation.
Epsom Community Centre, 202 Gillies Avenue, Epsom at 7:30pm on Tuesday 12th of June (doors open 7pm).
Patricia Langford will give a presentation on 'Mollusca and Man'.
She has given a similar talk before but people enjoyed it so much we've asked for it again.
Bring along shells that are Man associated. Eg. Shells and stamps, shells used in decoration, shell jewellery, shell food - anything people have used shells for.
Shell Auction - Albany Hall, Saturday 27th October 2012
If you would like to sell at the auction then please register your interest with Peter Poortman (09 8171397 or firstname.lastname@example.org), with an indication of how many lots you would like to enter.
A reminder that if you have not already paid, subscriptions for 2012 are now due.
Invoices were enclosed with the February newsletter.
Contact our Treasurer Michael Barlow (09 6233231) if you have any queries.
We welcome contributions to our club magazine 'Poirieria'.
Anything related to shells or collecting would be greatly appreciated - Eg. shelling trips/finds, personal observations/tips, scientific research, historic anecdotes, a notable washup, etc.
Please email articles to Peter Poortman at email@example.com, or post to 26 Pendlebury Street, Green Bay, Auckland 0604.
We have an extensive collection of books, magazines, and scientific publications available, as well as a biological microscope.
Other Club News
. As part of a wider study of the genus Cominella, Hamish Spencer requires some ethanol preserved live taken specimens of the Norfolk Island endemic species Cominella norfolkensis. If you are going to Norfolk Island and would be willing to collect these whelks, please contact Hamish at firstname.lastname@example.org. He will send you the details, including collection materials and the necessary documentation.
. Items of interest for the monthly newsletter are always welcome - email to email@example.com, or post to 26 Pendlebury Street, Green Bay, Auckland 0604.
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