UF 220856, the shell of Petaloconchus sculpturatus. (Photo © IVP FLMNH)

This Fossil Friday I am happy to introduce a vermetid gastropod, Petaloconchus sculpturatus. Vermetid gastropods, or “worm shells,” are unlike other gastropods in that they have very irregular shells that resembles a messy unraveling coil.

This specimen was found in the Gatún Formation of Panama, and other specimens have also been collected in Florida and several countries in Central America and northern South America. Petaloconchus sculpturatus could be found filter-feeding in shallow ocean waters of the Early Miocene to Late Pliocene.

To read more about Petaloconchus sculpturatus, be sure to check out the entry on Fossils of Panama.


Petaloconchus sculpturatus. (2013). Retrieved from