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Queen Conch

Aliger gigas


  • Large, pink-lipped shell; spindle shaped with thick yellowish outer coating
  • Shell has short conical spire with blunt spines on shoulder
  • Soft body with black-speckled foot and a snout-like mouth
  • Bright yellow eyes perched on the end of two stalks

Similar Species

Other marine snails like the Milk conch.


Up to 12 inches (8 pounds).


Sandy and hard bottoms and coral rubble; occasionally in seagrass beds; found in Caribbean and western Atlantic Ocean waters, including those around the Florida Keys north to the St. Lucie Inlet on the east coast.


Slow-moving, long-lived marine snail that feeds on algae and other marine plants.

Excellent eyesight.

Additional Information

The conch’s large, pink-lipped shell is valued among shell collectors, and its meat is a dietary staple for many Caribbean cultures.

May not be commercially or recreationally harvested and/or sold in Florida.

Queen conch research

Image credit: Janessa Fletcher