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The Atoll of Funafuti, Ellice group : its zoology, botany, ethnology and general structure based on collections made by Charles Hedley of the Australian Museum, Sydney, N.S.W.



Haliotis stomatiaeformis, Reeve.

Pilsbry, Man. Conch, xii., 1890, p. 89, pl. iii., fig. 4; pl. xlix., figs. 30-35.

I found a single dead shell on the windward side of Nukulailai. Mr. Sweet has sent me specimens from Funafuti.

Pilsbry records this from New Caledonia and Fiji.

Emarginula clathrata, Pease.

Pilsbry, op. cit., p. 266, pl. lxiii., fig. 12; Pease, Am. Journ. Conch, iv., 1868, p. 99, pl. ii., fig. 24.

Once found alive under a stone in the lagoon. Hitherto only known from Hawaii.

Emarginula mariei, Crosse.

Pilsbry, op. cit., p. 271, pl. xxii., figs. 34, 35, 36.

A few bleached shells were gathered on the lagoon beach. Hitherto only known from New Caledonia.

Acmaæ Saccharina, Linne.

Pilsbry, Man. Conch, xiii., 1891, p. 49, pl. xxxvi., figs. 60, 61, 62, 78; pl. xviii., figs. 31, 32; pl. xxiv., figs. 12, 13.

A few small and dead shells inclining towards the var. perplexa, Pilsbry, were found on the outer beach. Schmeltz mentions it from Queensland, Samoa, and Fiji.

page 403
Phenacolepas senta, sp. nov.(Fig. 1).

Phenacolepas senta, sp. nov.
(Fig. 1).

Shell cap shaped, with a protuberant and overhanging posterior apex, the earlier portion thin and translucent, the older solid and opaque; adult shell asymmetrical by reason of a slight spiral twist. Colour white. The nepionic shell is very smooth and glossy sharply contrasting with the dull surface of the remainder, depressedly turbinate, apparently two whorled but swallowed past the nucleus by the older shell. Sculpture:—on the part next the nepionic shell there are circular growth lines, as these diverge wider their interstices are crossed by longitudinal lines which develop later into low small rounded ribs parted by slight furrows, these are reticulated by two series of fine raised threads crossing at right angles. Upon these ribs arise in quincunx order a series of Vshaped thorns, the limbs of which are directed anteriorly. A portion of the dorsal surface immediately above the posterior base is selected in the accompanying figure for illustrating this feature. Finally the limbs increase till they meet those of their neighbours and enclose a rhomboidal space, thus the marginal part of the shell becomes cancellated by a raised network, oblique both to the line of growth, the axis of the shell and the earlier sculpture. The minute transverse thread lines persist to the aperture.

Aperture subcircular, the edge when adult is broadened and finely crenulated. Interior glossy, the exterior sculpture visible through the shell. Muscular impressions are a right and left adductor scar and a narrow horse shoe marking the head line a little within the lip. Length 6, breadth 4 1/2, height 3 mm.

Eight empty shells from sand on the beach of Funafuti lagoon.

page 404

This species has its nearest kin in P. cinnamomea, Gould, but differs so widely from that by contour, sculpture and exposed nepionic shell that a new genus seems necessary to express the distinction. Yet P. cinnamomea itself stands perhaps as far again from the type of the genus P. crenulata, Broderip, and being unable to offer any information on the animal of the new species, I am unwilling to further divide a group of which our knowledge is so brief.

Scutellina of Gray (1847) being preoccupied by Scutellina of Agassiz (1841), Pilsbry has substituted Phenacolepas. *

* [unclear: Pilsbefibry]—The Nautilus, v., Dec. 1891, p. 88.

Trochus obeliscus, Gmelin.

Pilsbry, Man. Conch, xi., 1889, p. 19, pl. ii., figs. 13, 14.

Several specimens were taken alive in shallow water in the lagoon associated with Mitra episcopalis.

Fischer quotes this from New Caledonia, Fiji, Samoa and Tonga.

Trochus tubiferus, Kiener.

Pilsbry, op. cit., p. 31, pl. vi., figs. 62, 63.

Two living specimens were found at low water on the western side of the Funafuti lagoon.

Fischer gives as the range of this species New Caledonia, Loyalty Islands, Upolu, Samoa, and Pilsbry adds Fiji.

[unclear: Fishescher]—Coquilles Vivantes, Trochus, 1880, p. 117.

Trochus atropurpureus, Gould.

Pilsbry, op. cit., p. 77, pl. xi., figs. 28-32; pl. xiii., figs. 86, 87; pl. xv., figs. 50, 51.

Not uncommon as dead shells on the lagoon beach.

Pilsbry notes this from San Christoval, Solomons, Tutuila, Samoa and Fiji. In this Museum are specimens from New Caledonia and Tupuselei, Hood Lagoon and Milne Bay, British New Guinea.

Trochus fastigiatus, A. Adams.

Reeve, Conch. Icon, xiii., 1861, Trochus, pl. xv., fig. 87.

Several dead specimens from the beach of the Funafuti lagoon. Though described nearly half a century ago, the locality of this species has not hitherto been announced. I have also collected it at Panie, New Caledonia.

Gibbula concinna, Dunker.

[unclear: Pilsbry,] op. cit., p. 230, pl. xl., figs. 8, 9.

Alsbhell plentiful at Funafuti and which I also saw at Nukulailai, seems [unclear: Qthough] not agreeing exactly, to be nearest this. The page 405sculpture and, except for a white apex, the colour, is like that of G. danieli, Crosse, from which it differs by a crenulate umbilical margin. The largest is 71/2 mm in diameter and has an umbilicus 11/2 mm. broad.

G. concinna is known only from Upolu, Samoa.

Glbbula Phasianella, Deshayes.

Pilsbry, op. cit., p. 235, pl. xxxi., figs. 31, 32, 33.

Dead shells frequently occurred on the lagoon beach of Funafuti.

Specimens from the Manchester Museum enable me to state that this is the species which Melvill and Standen record* from Lifu as "Margarita striatula, Phil.," a name which I have been, unable to trace in literature. It has already been recorded from Lifu, and also from He Art by Fischer. I found it alive in abundance under stones between tide marks, at Noumea, New Caledonia. It is represented in this Museum from Lord Howe Island.

The species hardly seems suitably placed in this genus.

* Melvill & Standen—Journ. Conch, viii., 1896, p. 126.

Fischer, op. cit., p. 364.

Monilea Lifuana, Fischer.

Pilsbry, op. cit., p. 252, p. xli, figs. 6, 7; pl. lix., figs. G4, 65.

Commonly seen in a dead state on the sandy beach of the Funafuti lagoon.

As the name implies this species was first found at the Loyalty Islands. Smith has recorded it from Torres Straits. It is also in this Museum from Aneiteum, New Hebrides.

Smith-Zool. Coll. "Alert," 1884, p. 73.

Monilea Tragema, Melvill & Standen.

Melvill & Standen, Journ. Conch., viii., 1896, p. 313, pl. xi., fig. 78.

A shell fairly plentiful in a dead state on the lagoon beach of Funafuti is referred here. The fifty examples before me show much variation. The colour ranges from pale pink articulated with white, through white irregularly splashed or microscopically dotted with pink, to entire chalky white. The elevation and angulation of the whorls vary, and the size of the largest (length 41/2 mm.) is almost double that of the type from Lifu.

Euchelus Instrictus, Gould.

Pilsbry, op. cit., p. 441, pl. lxvii., figs. 62, 63.

A single dead specimen from the beach of the Funafuti lagoon.

page 406

Schmeltz quotes this from Fiji and Samoa. There are specimens in this Museum from New Caledonia.

Teinostoma qualum, sp. nov. (Fig. 2).

Teinostoma qualum, sp. nov. (Fig. 2).

Shell with spire scarcely elevated, rather widely umbilicated. Colour white. Whorls three, flattened below the suture, rounded at the periphery and concave at the base. Sculpture:—the last whorl is ornamented by about twenty, broad, squarely projecting, transverse ribs, which arise at a distance from the suture, enlarge to the periphery and continue to the basal angle, these ribs vanish on the penultimate whorl; close, regular and fine, raised, spiral lines cover the whole shell, crossing the ribs and interstices alike; these are in their turn overridden by transverse microscopic threads. Base excavate in the centre. Umbilicus one-fifth of the shell's diameter, exhibiting the previous whorls. Aperture round, lip thickened, above spreading on the previous whorl and at the base projecting a callus tongue into the umbilicus. Major diameter 1·8; minor 1·4; height "75.

Three specimens from sand on the lagoon shore, all of which are unfortunately broken at the aperture.

This closely resembles Cyclostrema archeri, Tryon* from Singapore, which is rather larger and more closely ribbed, but the basal callus on the lip of the present form has decided me in considering it generically and therefore specifically distinct from that.

* Man. Conch, x., 1888, p. 89, pl. xxxiii., figs. 84, 85.

Teinostoma Tricarinata, Melvill & Standen.

Melvill & Standen, Journ. Conch., viii, 1896, p. 311, pl. xi., figs. 75 a. b. Three specimens occurred on the sandy beach of the Funafuti lagoon. The only other example known came from Lifu.

page 407
Cirsonella Ovata, sp. nov.(Fig. 3).

Cirsonella Ovata, sp. nov.
(Fig. 3).

Shell globose-ovate, thin, and semitransparent, white, narrowly umbilicate. Whorls five, rounded, smooth, save for delicate growth-striations, margined and contracted below the suture. Aperture oblique, elliptical. Lip sharp, columella reflected. Length, 21/2, breadth 2 mm.

Three specimens from the lagoon beach.

Liotia crenata, Kiener.

Tryon, Man. Conch, x., 1888, p. lll, pl. xxxvi., figs. 12, 13.

One shell from the lagoon beach. This is represented in the Australian Museum from Aneiteum, New Hebrides. Smith quotes it from San Christoval, Solomons, and Melvill and Standen from Lifu.

Phasianella wisemanni, Baird.

Pilsbry, Man. Conch, x., 1888, p. 181, pl. xxxix., figs. 73, 74.

Several specimens from the lagoon beach. Schmeltz unites with this P. graffei, Dunker.* Already recorded from the Ellice, Samoa, and Tonga, by Schmeltz. Reported by Pilsbry from Fiji and New Hebrides.

* Schmeltz—Museum Godeffroy, Cat. v., 3 874, p. 145.

Phasianella minima, Melvill.

Melvill, Proc. Malac. Soc. ii., 1896, p. 115, pl. viii., fig. 11.

Three shells from the lagoon beach seem to be referable to this Bombay species.

Stomatella sanguinea, A. Adams.

Pilsbry, Man. Conch, xii., 1890, p. 18, pl. liii., figs. 85, 86.

Common as dead shells on the lagoon beach. Pilsbry notes this species from Fiji, Upolu, Samoa, and the Paumotus; Schmeltz adds Tahiti.

Stomatia phymotis, Helbling.

Pilsbry, op. cit., p. 31, pl. liv., figs. 16, 17, 21, 22.

Dead shells were not rare on the lagoon beach. Pilsbry records this species from Fiji, and Schmeltz from Upolu. In this Museum it is shown from New Caledonia and the Louisiades.

Gena Rosacea, Pease.

Pilsbry, op. cit., p. 41, pl. lv., fig. 12.

page 408

Several empty shells from the lagoon beach. Hitherto only recorded from the Paumotus.

Turbo petholatus, L., var. Caledonicus, Fischer.

Pilsbry, Man. Conch, x., 1888, p. 194, pl. xlv., fig. 99.

A few dead shells were collected on the beaches.

This variety, of a peculiar colour pattern, and angled more or less at the shoulder, is recorded by Fischer from New Caledonia, and Anaa, Paumotus. A specimen in this Museum from the Gilbert Islands shares this form and colour. Perhaps the typical form is replaced in the Central Pacific by this variety.

Turbo setosus, Gmelin.

Pilsbry, op. cit., p. 195, pl. lxiii., fig. 32.

Abundant on the east coast of the atoll at low water on the outer reef.

Fischer cites this species from New Caledonia, Tahiti, Paumotus, Marquesas, and Gilberts; Schmeltz adds Samoa. It is also shown in this Museum from the Solomons.

The opercula of the Funafuti examples agree with Fischer's description,* but not with Pilsbry's, being white and smooth, except on the distal margin, where they are brown and obliquely wrinkled.

* Fischer—Coquilles Vivantes, 1873, Turbo, p. 57

Turbo argyrostomus, Linne.

Pilsbry, op. cit., p. 197, pl. xl., fig. 18; pl. xlii,, fig. 41; pl. xlvi., fig. 8.

This species was less abundant; it replaced the preceeding on the western side of the atoll. Fischer indicates it from Tonga, and from Anaa, Paumotus, and Schmeltz from Upolu. It is represented in this Museum from the Solomons, New Caledonia, Fanning Island, and Hawaii.

Astralium petrosum, Martyn.

Pilsbry, op. cit, p. 234, pl. Ixiv., figs. 65, 66.

I found this alive in the lagoon.

Pilsbry records this from New Caledonia, Fiji, and Hawaii. An example from Woodlark Island, British New Guinea, is in this Museum.

Leptothyra laeta, Montrouzier.

Pilsbry, op. cit., p. 258, pl. lxiii., figs. 29, 30.

Common on the lagoon beach at Funafuti.

Pilsbry records this from Australia, Solomons, Fiji, and New Caledonia.

page 409

Delphinula Laciniata, Lamarck.

Pilsbry, op. cit., p. 266, pl. lxvii,, figs. 1, 2, 4.

I collected a single worn shell on the sandbank in the centre of the Funafuti lagoon.

It is recorded by Kiener* from New Ireland, by Melvill and Standen from the Loyalty, and there is a specimen in this Museum collected by Pére Montrouzier at Woodlark Island, British New Guinea.

* Kiener—Coquilles Vivantes, 1873 Delphinula, p.4.

Melvill Standen—Op. cit., p.126

Neritopsis Radula, Linne.

Tryon, op. cit., p. 82, pl. xxix., fig. 68.

One dead shell was found on the beach.

Melvill and Standen record this from Lifu. Specimens from New Caledonia are described by Fischer.

Fischer—Journ. de Conch. xxiii.,1875, p.197

Nerita albicilla, Linne.

Martens, Conch. Cab. ii., 11, 1889, p. 25, pl. viii., figs. 1, 2.

One living example, found in the lagoon.

This species ranges south along the Australian coast to Sydney. Von Martens cites Port Carteret, New Ireland, Solomons, New Caledonia, Fiji, Samoa, Tonga, and Tahiti. A specimen from Erromanga, New Hebrides, is in this Museum.

Nerita Maxima, Chemnitz.

Martens, op. cit., p. 29, pl. vi., figs. 1-5.

Two living shells from under stones between tides in the lagoon of Funafuti.

Von Martens quotes for this Jaluit, Marshalls, Fiji, Samoa, and Tahiti.

Specimens are in this Museum from Aneiteum, New Hebrides.

Nerita Plicata, Linne.

Martens, op. cit., p. 63, pl. x,, figs. 6 - 10.

This species occured at Funafuti in great profusion. The wave-worn breccia of the outer beach, just above high tide, is its favourite haunt. Here a hundred may be gathered from a few square feet. Into any crevice they crawl and huddle together like a cluster of Helix aspersa when hibernating. Their tenacity is wonderful. Often when picking them out of a crevice in the coral, I have pulled away the shell and found the foot and operculum adhering to the rock, torn from the viscera left in the page 410shell. This mollusc sometimes ascends the trunks of trees in the vicinity of the beach, and behaves more like a terrestrial than a marine organism.

Martens quotes the following habitats from the Pacific:—New Guinea, Tucopia, New Caledonia, Fiji, Upolu, Samoa, Uvea, Futuna, Tongatabu, Tahiti, Borabora, Gambier, Paumotus, Marquesas, Jaluit, Marshalls, Ponape, Guam, Carolines, and the Mariannes. Material in this Museum enables me to add Erromanga, New Hebrides, and the Solomons.

At Port Moresby, British New Guinea, I was told that this mollusc is locally called "mimi," meaning "to itch," because it made the tongue of the eater sore.

Nerita Polita, Linne.

Martens, op. cit., p. 72, pl. iii., figs. 5, 10- 26; pl. xiv., figs. 1-18, 22-26.

One specimen of the typical form found alive in the lagoon of Funafuti.

Martens cites this from Queensland, New Ireland, Solomons, Fiji, Upolu, Samoa, Vavao, Tonga, Mangarewa, Society Islands, and Hawaii. I can add Eromanga, New Hebrides.

Nerita Insculpta, Recluz.

Martens, op. cit., p. 88, pl. xi., figs. 1-4.

Two living specimens were found in the Funafuti lagoon.

Martens notices this from Upolu, Samoa, and Bowen, Queensland.

Neritina reticulata, Sowerby.

Martens, Conch. Cab. ii., 10, 1879, p. 132, pl. xv, figs. 1-3.

Several dead shells were found on the beach of the Funafuti lagoon.

Martens cites this from Nukuhiva, Marquesas, Tahiti, Borabora, and Morutea. In this Museum it is reported from Strong Island, New Caledonia, and the Solomons.

Helicina musiva, var. Rotundata, Mousson.

Mousson, Journ. de Conch., xxi., 1873, p. 107.

Common at Funafuti. Graeffe collected this at Vaitupu.

Eulima pyramidalis, A. Adams.

Tryon, Man. Conch., viii., 1886, p. 270, pl. lxviii., fig. 14.

Three examples from the lagoon beach.

page 411

I cannot, from published data, separate the later described E. solida, Sowb., and E. inflexa, Pease. Granted this synonomy, the species extends to Fiji, Paumotus, and Hawaii.

Eulima Decipiens, sp. nov.
(Fig. 4).

Shell small, straight, rather broad, translucent, glossy. Colour porcelainous white. Apex mucronate. Whorls eleven, scarcely rounded, sculpture none. Suture scarcely perceptible; what first appears to be the suture, proves with further magnification to be the internal septa seen through the shell substance. Aperture pyriform, oblique, with a callous arched columella. Length 5, breadth 11/2 mm.

One living specimen from the lagoon.

This species somewhat resembles E. piriformis, Brugnone, than which it is rather narrower.

Fig. 4.

Fig. 4.

Stylifer varicieerus, sp. nov.
(Fig. 5).

Shell ovate conical, thin, translucent and shining. Apex broken but apparently acicular. Remaining whorls nine, of which the
Fig. 5.

Fig. 5.

latter are markedly tumid and narrow, giving the shell a squeezed or telescoped aspect. The upper whorls are smooth and polished, the lower gradually acquire an oblique, longitudinal sculpture which becomes coarser as the shell proceeds and finally on the page 412last half whorl rise into sharp varices; on the latter three whorls several weak spiral threads reticulate the transverse growth lines and create angles below the suture and the periphery. Aperture very oblique, lip sharp, sinuous, reflected, effuse anteriorly, columella broad, arched, and reflected over a minute perforation. Length 11, breadth 61/2 mm.

This species in size and general shape approaches S. eburneus, Deshayes. But in the produced and effuse aperture it recedes from that towards S. crotaphis, Watson. A single specimen was procured at Funafuti.

Odostomia Bulimoides, Souverbic.

Tryon, op. cit., p. 362, pl. lxxix., fig. 69.

Several specimens which appear to be the young of this species from the lagoon beach.

Described by Souverbie from New Caledonia and reported by Melvill and Standen from Lifu.

Odostomia Rubra, Pease.

Tryon, op. cit., p. 363, pl. lxxix., fig. 75.

One living example from the lagoon. Pease procured the type from the Paumotus.

Pyramidella dolabrata, var. Terebelloides, A. Adams.

Tryon, op. cit., p. 300, pl. lxxii., fig. 74.

Two dead shells from the lagoon. There are specimens of this in the Museum from Hawaii, under the name of Obeliscus sulcatus, Nuttall.

Pyramidella turrita, A. Adams.

Tryon, op. cit., p. 301, pl. lxxii., figs. 84, 85.

A few dead shell from the lagoon beach. Tryon records this from New Caledonia.

In these two latter species, aged or adult individuals develop plicæ within the lip, a fact omitted in monographs.

Pyramidella mitralis, A. Adams.

Tryon, op. cit., p. 305, pl. lxxiii., figs. 2, 3, 94, 97.

Two dead shells from the lagoon beach. Tryon quotes this from Tahiti; Melvill and Standen from Lifu. In this Museum it it represented from Guam, New Caledonia, and Lord Howe Island.