The Genus Cymatium Röding, 1798

Taxonomy: The genus Cymatium is but one of the 10 genera which make up the family Ranellidae. The family is further divided into 15 subgenera which collectively include more than 150 species and subspecies. Of the 10 genera, the genus Cymatium is by far the largest - consisting of 10 subgenera and about 81 species and subspecies. Arrangement herein generally follows that of Thomas Henning & Jens Hemmen (Ranellidae & Personidae Of The World - 1993); updated as appropriate.

Habitat: Most Cymatium are found in relatively shallow water in tropical seas. However, some species are also found in temperate waters, and at times, in depths of up to 1,200 feet.

Feeding habits: All Cymatium are carnivorous and normally feed on living ascidians, tube-worms, other mollusks, sea-cucumbers and starfish although carrion is not spurned. Most species first anesthetize their victims with secretions from the salivary gland prior to ingestion. This not only serves to immobilize the prey, but aids in the digestive process.

Reproduction: The sexes are separate and fertilization takes place internally. The eggs are laid into cup-shaped receptacles called capsules. After hatching, the free-swimming larval stage of the offspring of several species lasts for several months, which fact accounts for extensive geographic ranges, some circumglobal.

Subgenera [type species shown]

Type species: Cymatium femorale (Linnaeus, 1758) Cymatium parthenopeum parthenopeum (von Salis, 1793) Cymatium succinctum (Linnaeus, 1771) Cymatium gutturnium (Röding, 1798) Cymatium muricinum (Röding, 1798)
Cymatium Monoplex Gelagna Ranularia Gutturnium
Cymatium pfeifferianum (Reeve, 1844) Linatella caudata (Gmelin, 1791) Cymatium perryi Emerson & Old, 1963 Cymatium rubeculum (Linnaeus, 1758) Cymatium gibbosum gibbosum (Broderip, 1833)
Reticutriton Linatella Lotoria Septa Turritriton