Amalda fossil shell
This is a fossil shell of the marine snail Amalda mucronata from the cliffs at Castlecliff Beach (Wanganui series, Castlecliffian, approximately 1.63 – 0.34 million years old). Amalda is a genus of olive shells (Olividae) that is particularly diverse in the Southern Hemisphere with a rich fossil record in New Zealand. A. mucronata is one of the largest species of Amalda currently extant in New Zealand. Individuals can be found in benthic sediments, buried shallowly beneath the sediment so that their long siphons protrude above the surface.
Michael Gemmel is a PhD student in the Phoenix Lab at Massey University and is studying the gastropod Amalda. Michael is researching the species boundaries and population dynamics of this gastropod group. Click here to see more gastropods that Michael is studying.