Netted dog-whelks often bury themselves in the sand but stick up their siphon to detect carrion much further away! Females lay very distinctive clear egg capsules with tiny yellow eggs inside, which can be seen on seagrass, seaweed or under rocks.
How to identify
A small, creamy-brown sea snail, with a ‘netted’ rectangular pattern of lines across the shell, formed when the spiral ridges intersect flat ribs. A long siphon can sometimes be seen protruding from the head end of the shell.
You will often find large numbers of netted dog whelks together feasting on dead crabs and other carrion!
How people can help
Always follow the Seashore Code when rockpooling, be careful to leave everything as you found it - replace any rocks you turn over, put back any crabs or fish and ensure not to scrape anything off its rocky home. If you want to learn more about our rockpool life, Wildlife Trusts around the UK run rockpool safaris and offer Shoresearch training - teaching you to survey your local rocky shore. The data collected is then used to protect our coasts and seas through better management or through the designation of Marine Protected Areas.