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Phylum Mollusca > Class Gastropoda > Family Ellobiidae
Pythia snail
Pythia sp.
Family Ellobiidae
updated Jul 2020

Where seen? This odd-shaped snail is sometimes seen in our back mangroves, on leaves and trunks of mangrove trees and mangrove plants. Sometimes seen in clusters of a few individuals. Pronounced 'pith-ee-uh', in Greek mythology 'Pythia' is the priestess of Apollo who delivered the oracles at Delphi.

Features: 2-3cm. Shell smooth, shaped like a fat teardrop with a sharp tip. Shell opening small with a flared edge. It breathes air (instead of through gills like most other marine snails) and like others of the Family Ellobidae, it lacks an operculum. Body dark, paler towards the end of the foot, with short dark long tentacles.

Sungei Buloh Besar, Apr 11

Pulau Semakau, Jan 09

Pasir Ris Park, Dec 03
What does it eat? It grazes on algae growing on mangrove tree leaves and trunks.

Human uses: In Indonesia, they are sometimes collected for food.

Sungei Buloh Besar, Apr 11

Pythia snails on Singapore shores
On wildsingapore flickr



  • Tan Siong Kiat and Henrietta P. M. Woo, 2010 Preliminary Checklist of The Molluscs of Singapore (pdf), Raffles Museum of Biodiversity Research, National University of Singapore.
  • Tan, K. S. & L. M. Chou, 2000. A Guide to the Common Seashells of Singapore. Singapore Science Centre. 160 pp.
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