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Conchology Section
Auckland Museum Institute

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Newsletter - May 2004

The Shell Auction held on Sat. 29th May at the Albany Hall was a great success with more than $4000 traded. We were delighted to see a group from Wellington in attendance and hope to meet many more shell enthusiasts from around the country at the 5th. New Zealand Shell Show - Auckland 15-17th Oct 2004. (Please contact Peter Poortman as soon as possible to register for this event)

The family TURBINIDAE was our focus family of shells at our last meeting and a magnificent array of members shells were on display.

Margaret Morley's hints on how to clean shells to improve their appearance was invaluable. Doug Snook passed on insider information on what the judges look for when points are awarded at shows.

The prize for the ultimate shell cleaner must belong to Euglandina rosea a carnivorous land snail from the Everglades, which preys on the gorgeous, candy-striped Florida tree snail, Lignus fasciatus. The Euglandina rosea forces its scythe like radula into the tree snail's aperture and literally eats it out of house and home!

Next Meeting: Tuesday 8th June 7:30pm.
This will be held in the Ranfurly Room. Epsom Community Centre. 202 Gillies Ave. Please park at the rear of the Centre - entrance is via Kimberly Rd.

Programme: we will be viewing a further excerpt of our Blue Planet series. Also this evening we wish to feature some minor shell families: Neritidae, Littornidae, Turritellidae, Tonnidae, Limidae, Nassaridae, Triviidae, Cerithiidae or bring along examples of any other minor families you may have in your collections.

Members who attended the field trip to Burgess island, Moko Hinau Islands on Sun. 18th April are asked to bring along photographs of the trip for a display. Bruce Hazelwood reports that the field trip resulted in an excellent collection rate of land snails. Bruce hopes to visit the Hen and Chicken Islands in the spring and would like a big contingent of members to help him collect there. Its not a difficult task. Remember Charles Darwin's advice: 'to hunt snails, you've got to think like a snail.' If you have ever wondered how snails originally reached off shore Islands Charles Darwin had an answer. He speculated that strong winds could have carried juveniles from the mainland or they were carried in the feathers of ground nesting birds (In the Burgess Is. context: on the feathers of birds such as the native wood pigeons we saw feeding on the ground on nearby Little Barrier Island.) According to Darwin, 'over time the snails 'morphed' into sub-species......'

Margaret Morley has received a request from an artist for a loan of a medium size Tridacna clam shell to be used as a mould. One valve in any condition would be sufficient (length approx 35cm width 25cm) Please phone Margaret on 09-576-8323 if you have a suitable shell

Lot 30 could not be located after the Shell Auction. If you have this lot in your possession could you please contact Doug Snook or send him $13.

June 18th. 7:30pm. Steve O'Shea: The Giant Squid Marine Education Centre 1045 Beach Rd. Long Bay. Admission charge is $5.

Editors Tony and Jenny Enderby, P.O Box 139 Leigh, require articles for future Poirieria issues. All queries: Ph. (09) 422 6127 or email:

Conchology section website is and our Website Officer is Peter Poortman (

Library news
To borrow any of the Section's books please contact our Librarian Gladys Goulstone - address 38A Church Rd. Mangere Bridge, Auckland - ph. (09) 634 2823. Please contact Gladys regarding books on the list mailed Sept 2001 - she has extra copies of this.
Gladys will deliver book orders to the meeting. If you send her an A4 P.0. handy bag with $2.95 in stamps per book, she will mail the books. Please return books to Matapuna as soon as possible or to Gladys at the next meeting, or return them by mail.

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Subscriptions are due for 2004. Annual subscription is $20.
Please send to: The Treasurer, Conchology Section, Dr. N. Hudson, 4/20 Hayden St. Freemans Bay, Auckland 1, N.Z.

I/we enclose $20.00 for my/our annual subscription:

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