TEXTILE CONE SNAIL (Conus textile)
You may think big whoop it’s a snail, but if you pick it up, you could be stung, and die.
Cone snails are a big family of some 600 snails nearly all are venomous, among them are a group that are predatory, carnivorous with particularly strong venom.
The Textile Cone show above is hunting. See the proboscis long tube at the top? It contains a small harpoon-shaped barb called the radula (shown below) which extends from the tube the into the victim, where the venom is injected. The proboscis expands around the victim and the cone swallows the victim whole.
The two long extensions on either side of the proboscis are the tentacles, each with an eye on the end.
Three species that are the most venomous are the Geographic Cone (Conus geographus) the Textile Cone (Conus textile), and the Tulip Cone (Conus tulipus) though around twenty cones are known to be dangerous to humans. There are 15 human deaths on record due to stings from cone snails. To complicate matters, they also have beautifully patterned shells which adds to their appeal.
Their sting is capable of penetrating gloves, clothing, or even a thin wetsuit. Handling venomous cones only by the blunt end is not entirely safe, especially without heavy gloves, since the stinging apparatus may strike quickly in any direction.
Cones normally feed on fish, worms or snails. They may grow to over six inches in length, and may be found under rocks, under coral, or crawling across the sand.