Common Periwinkle

Littorina littorea
Common Periwinkle

Habitat: Rocky shore and rock pools to low shore
Depth: 1-60m
Food: Algae covering the rocks
Size: Up to 4cm
Lifespan: Unknown
Conservation Status: Not Evaluated (NE)

Familiar to all rock-poolers, this little sea snail is very common on the rocky shore, but also in muddy areas such as estuaries. Periwinkles are herbivorous, grazing algae by scraping it with their radula – a tongue-like structure covered covered in teeth. When the tide goes out, periwinkles can close off their shell with a trap door, to keep moist inside.

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