Seashells are the hard exoskeleton of molluscs such as snails, clams, chitons. For most people, acquaintance with molluscs began with empty shells. These shells often delight the eye with a variety of shapes and colours. Conchology studies the mollusc shells and this science dates back to the 17th century. However, modern science - malacology is the study of molluscs as whole organisms. Today more and more people are interacting with the ocean – divers, snorkelers, beachgoers – all of them often find in the seas not empty shells but live molluscs – living shells, whose appearance is significantly different from museum specimens. This book serves as a tool for identifying such animals. The book covers the region from the Red Sea to Hawaii, the Marshall Islands, and Guam. Inside the book:
- Photographs of 1500+ species, including one hundred cowries (Cypraeidae) and more than one hundred twenty allied cowries (Ovulidae) of the region;
- Live photos of hundreds of species have never before appeared in field guides or popular books;
- 2600 full-colour images;
- Convenient pictorial guide at the beginning and index at the end of the book.
It is designed for divers, underwater photographers, snorkelers, shell collectors, beachcombers, and nature lovers. Photographs, showing colour variations are included. The validity of species names was checked with the help of the World Register of Marine Species (WoRMS).
Andrey Ryanskiy is an observing naturalist and expert UW photographer. He attained the highest possible diver's certification levels (Divemaster, Adv Trimix, Full Cave) fifteen years ago. Since that time he has travelled the world with his camera, never hitting the water without it and has logged several thousand dives. Underwater photography for him is an instrument to promote the education and the care of the oceans and their inhabitants.