Queen Conch - Strombus gigas Taxonomy:
Queen Conch belongs to the Kingdom Animalia, Phylum Mollusca, Class Gastropoda, Order Sorbeoconcha, Family Strombidae, Genus Strombus and Species gigas. Scientific names:
The scientific name of Queen Conch is Strombus gigas. Other common names:
Queen Conch is also commonly known as Caribbean Queen Conch, Lambi, Pink Conch, Caracol Rosado, Cobo, Caracol reina, Caracol de pala, Caracol Rosa, Botuto and Guarura. Origin or natural range:
Strombus gigas hails from the tropical regions such as North America, especially Florida, including the Caribbean Sea, Mexico, Bahamas and Bermuda. Size:
Queen Conch is the largest Mollusk found in the North America, with its size ranging between six inches and twelve inches or fifteen centimeters and thirty-one centimeters or one foot. Aggression:
Strombus gigas is non-aggressive towards the marine aquarium members. Venom status:
Queen Conch is non-poisonous in nature. Habit & Habitat:
- In its natural habitat, Strombus gigas is found on sea grass beds, on coral reefs and on sandy bottoms at a depth of around two hundred meters.
- A small Conch Fish may sometimes take refuge for protection in the mantle of Queen Conch.
- If disturbed, Strombus gigas withdraws itself completely under sand.
- Life expectancy:
Queen Conch lives for around fifteen years. Morphology:
- The soft body of Strombus gigas has three segments, head, visceral mass and foot.
- The head of Queen Conch has two pairs of tentacles with the larger pair having photosensitive eyes. The smaller pair of tentacles is touch and smell sensitive.
- The foot has a small sized operculum which functions and appears like a claw.
- The body of Queen Conch is protected by a very hard, large and spiral Calcium Carbonate shell with flared lips. The mantle secretes the shell.
- The iridescent material secreted by the shell, called Nacre, of Strombus gigas is generally cream, yellow, pink and peach in colors.
- Queen Conch is unisexual and attains sexual maturity when its shell develops flared lips.
- Strombus gigas reproduces sexually during summers.
- On the sea floor, the female Queen Conch releases around one hundred and eighty thousand eggs to four hundred and sixty thousand eggs per spawning.
- After fertilization, the eggs hatch into the larval development stage called Velliger Stage. The larvae swim up towards the sea surface and free float for a few weeks.
- Once the larvae get suitable substrate to settle down, they develop into adult Queen Conches of one foot in around 3.00 years to 3.50 years.
- Growth enabling environment in your marine aquarium:
Aquarium habit & habitat:
- Tank type: To host Strombus gigas, you should have an established Reef Type Marine Aquarium.
- Aquarium set-up: Keep ample rocks, Live Rocks and a thick layer of sand for Queen Conch to hide in and to search food in your marine aquarium.
- Temperature of water: Seventy-two to seventy-eight degrees Fahrenheit.
- Specific gravity of water: 1.023 to 1.025.
- pH of water: 8.10 to 8.40.
Feeding & Nutrition:
- Diet: Queen Conch is Herbivorous and a Scavenger in feeding habit.
- Food content: Strombus gigas eats phytoplankton, especially Cyanobacteria, Hair Algae, grass and epiphytes. It also scavenges on detritus.
- Being an algae-eater, Queen Conch keeps your marine aquarium free of algae.
- Due to its scavenging habit, Strombus gigas eats the detritus thereby, keeping your reef tank free of perishable organic matter.
- Queen Conch is consumed as food by the human beings.
- The shell and the pearl of Strombus gigas is used for making ornaments.
- The lime of charred shell is utilized for making mortar for buildings.
- The shell of Queen Conch is also used as curio and as Conch Trumpet.
- Strombus gigas is easy to maintain.
- Sting Ray eats Queen Conch. Therefore, do not keep rays with the conch in the same marine aquarium.
Queen Conch may move small rocks in your reef tank.