Presented by Karl Kemm

Horn Story

Conch Shell Yellow Helmet C# Shell. I got this in Hawaii but doubt it came from there though it has South Pacific origins judging from the species.

Lightning Whelk  Busycon perversum    
From the shop of Robert Trafton – The Conch King

As the scientific name indicates, this shell has the unusual quality of turning backwards from other shells.  While that quality is exceedingly rare as a mutation in other shells it is normal for this species and its ancestral predecessors namely Busycon contrarium.  The turning direction is considered correct within the Buddhist belief system (curls of the Buddha etc.) and any shells oriented this way are the most desired and sacred.  Since the Lightning Whelk is native only to the Caribbean and adjoining Atlantic region, Asians did not know of or desire this naturally occurring correct-turning shell until recent years.  This backwards turning shell is also the official seashell for the state of Texas, something I find curiously appropriate.

Sea Horns