Story: Shellfish

Snakeskin chiton

Snakeskin chiton

Chitons are a simple type of shellfish. They have eight shell-like plates on their back and a broad muscular foot for clinging on to rocks. If they are dislodged they can roll into a ball. The typical shellfish mantle forms a band, or girdle, around the rim of the shell. In this common species the girdle has dark stripes and resembles a snake’s skin.

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Te Ara - The Encyclopedia of New Zealand
Photograph by Melanie Lovell-Smith

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How to cite this page:

Maggy Wassilieff, 'Shellfish - Chitons, tusk shells and rare classes', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, (accessed 19 April 2024)

Story by Maggy Wassilieff, published 12 Jun 2006