Neptunea lyrata

Neptunea lyrata, also known by the common names New England Neptune, wrinkled whelk, ribbed Neptune, inflated whelk, lyre whelk or lyre Neptune, is a species of large sea snail, a marine gastropod mollusk in the family Buccinidae, and is the state shell of Massachusetts. This species consists of several subspecies.

Neptunea lyrata
Neptunea lyrata shell.jpg
Apertural view of a shell of Neptunea lyrata showing the operculum
Scientific classification
N. lyrata
Binomial name
Neptunea lyrata

Murex lyratus Gmelin, 1791

Abapertural view of the shell of Neptunea lyrata

The New England Neptune (Neptunea lyrata decemcostata) was declared the state seashell of Massachusetts in 1987.[1]


  • Neptunea lyrata altispira
  • Neptunea lyrata lyrata Gmelin, 1791 - lyre whelk
  • Neptunea lyrata decemcostata (Say, 1826)[2] – wrinkled whelk or New England Neptune – synonyms:[3] Chrysodomus decemcostata (Say, 1826); Tritonium decemcostata (Say, 1826); Fusus decemcostatus Say, 1826; Neptunea turnerae Clarke, 1956
  • Neptunea lyrata turnerae Clarke, 1956


Neptunea lyrata occurs in the Western Atlantic Ocean.


  1. ^ Galvin, William Francis. "Massachusetts Facts: State Symbols". Secretary of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. Retrieved 8 May 2013.
  2. ^ Say, T. (1826). "Descriptions of marine shells recently discovered on the coast of the United States". Journal of the Academy of Natural Sciences of Philadelphia 5: 207-221.
  3. ^ Neptunea lyrata decemcostata (Say, 1826). Malacolog Version 4.1.1. A Database of Western Atlantic Marine Mollusca. Accessed 13 December 2009.

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