Internet Gastropod Research

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Internet Gastropod Research

Marcella Dawson:E-mail

[marine] Subject: Life Science

Topic: Mollusks

June 1996


This exercise is adapted from "Whelks" by Catherine E. Matthews, The Science Teacher, p 32, April, 1992.

Internet Procedure:

  1. The questions are grouped by major topic.
  2. Each topic is linked to the most suitable sites providing that information.
  3. Search at least two sites for each major topic; record information on your index cards.
  4. Color code your index cards for each topic.
  5. Answer the questions.
  6. If you find an appropriate, intriguing link, request permission to use it.


Systemics, Taxonomy

Phylum Mollusca


1. Complete the taxonomy for any species belonging to the genus busycon

  1. Kingdom
  2. Phylum
  3. Class
  4. Order
  5. Family
  6. Genus - busycon
  7. species

2. Do gastropods live in all oceans?

3. Describe the habitats in which gastropods are found.

4. Are all snails mollusks?

5. Why are gastropods classified as univalves?



Gastropod Shells

Design in nature - The gastropod shell

Penn State Department of Biology

The Georgia Shell Club - Links

6. Gastropod shells are made primarily out of which compound?

7. What does it mean when you say a whelk is left or right handed?

8. Do whelks have a spiraling shell?

9. What is inside the shell?

10. Are the siphons all the same shape and size? Why or why not?

11. How does the whelk protect itself?

12. Lime is used by mollusks to produce their shells. Where do they get the lime?

13. Draw a diagram of a whelk shell. Label the main parts: apex, spire, aperture, body whorl, siphon.

14. Describe the radula; explain how it used?

15. Do whelks have gills or lungs? Where are they located?

16. Draw a diagram that shows the movement of water through the siphon(s).


Chapter 40 Extended Lecture Outline

Class Gastropoda The Franklin Institute Science Museum

17. Most gastropods are hermaphrodites. Whelks are not. Explain what this means.

16. How many gastropods come from one egg sack?

19. What do gastropods eat?

20. How do the young free themselves from the egg cases?

21. How does the egg case protect the young?

22. How long do gastropods live?

23. How long does it take the gastropods egg to hatch?

24. How long is it before the miniature snails leave their egg capsules?

25. How often do gastropods lay eggs?

Gastropod Habitats

Endangered Mollusks: Images

Busycon carica



Class Gastropod

26. What predators eat whelks?

27. How do predators penetrate the whelk shell?

28. Which senses does a whelk use? How?

29. What kind of foot does a whelk have?

30. How does the whelk manage to eat a clam?

31. Is there a difference between marine and fresh water gastropods? Explain.

32. What is at the bottom of the mollusk food chain?

33. Are mollusks herbivores or carnivores?

34. Is the whelk considered a predator? Explain.

35. Find some uses for gastropods in the human environment.


Animals Project

The Cephalopod Page

Whelk of the Week

Banana Slug Home Page

The Slug Site

These pages authored and maintained by Marcella Dawson. Revised 06/23/99. Copyright 1995 CRPC GirlTECH. All rights reserved. . Email your comments. These pages were developed through GirlTECH '96, a teacher training and student technology council program sponsored by the Center for Research on Parallel Computation (CRPC), a National Science Foundation Science and Technology Center.