whelk

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whelk,

large marine gastropodgastropod,
member of the class Gastropoda, the largest and most successful class of mollusks (phylum Mollusca), containing over 35,000 living species and 15,000 fossil forms.
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 snail found in temperate waters. The whelk is sometimes eaten, but when food is plentiful, fishermen frequently use it for bait. Whelks are scavengers and carnivores, equipped with an extensible proboscis, tipped with a filelike radula, with which they bore holes through the shells of crabs and lobsters, and a large, muscular foot with which they hold their victims. The thick-lipped, spiral shell has an uneven surface with many protuberances. The knobbed whelk, the largest species, ranging up to 16 in. (40.6 cm), and the channeled whelk, slightly smaller, are both found south of Cape Cod, Mass. In summer the strings of pale, disk-shaped egg cases are common along the shore. The whelk is sometimes mistakenly called conchconch
, common name for certain marine gastropod mollusks having a heavy, spiral shell, the whorls of which overlap each other. In conchs the characteristic gastropod foot is reduced in size and the operculum, a horny plate located on the foot and used to seal the shell opening
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. Whelks are classified in the phylum MolluscaMollusca
, taxonomic name for the one of the largest phyla of invertebrate animals (Arthropoda is the largest) comprising more than 50,000 living mollusk species and about 35,000 fossil species dating back to the Cambrian period.
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, class Gastropoda, order Neogastropoda.

whelk

[welk]
(invertebrate zoology)
A gastropod mollusk belonging to the order Neogastropoda; species are carnivorous but also scavenge.

whelk

1
any carnivorous marine gastropod mollusc of the family Buccinidae, of coastal waters and intertidal regions, having a strong snail-like shell

whelk

2
a raised lesion on the skin; wheal
References in periodicals archive ?
Lightning whelks were moderately abundant, were observed in all 4 y, and were present at 8 of the 10 study sites.
The mode of reproduction for whelks also needs investigation because Castagna and Kraeuter (1994) suggested that knobbed whelk may be protandrous hermaphrodites.
Channel whelks are typically less abundant than knobbed whelks in habitats south of Cape May, NJ (Wood & Wood 1927, Magalhaes 1948, Paine 1962, DiCosimo 1988, Walker 1988).
Knobbed and channeled whelks (Busycon carica and Busycotypus canaliculatum, respectively) are common in inshore areas of the east coast of the United States from Georgia to Massachusetts (Walker, 1988) and form the basis of a substantial commercial fishery.
We had local fish with whelks and mussels and a delicious baby leek lasagne.
Dr Dixon added: "Examples of the gender-bending effect are male fish becoming feminised and producing egg protein, and dog whelks developing male sex organs.
The 38-year-old, from Pembroke Dock, west Wales, had launched a new career fishing for whelks with friend John Askey, 31, when tragedy struck on June 17.
Organised by the Cardigan Bay Fishermen's Association and sponsored by the WDA, the festival is designed to give people a wide choice of sea food - from lobster to whelks.
Weekend guests rash enough to come here for the weekend, hoping for a quiet Sunday with the newspapers in front of the fire, found themselves being carried off to freezing, oil-polluted beaches on which they were forced to work until dusk, bent double, filling rubber buckets with whelks, clams, many of which had to be rejected because they were covered in oil, and pretty little pink-flecked shells which cheered them up momentarily, as they were rather rare.
An island is doing its bit for the export drive - by selling whelks to the Far East.
We bought cockles, whelks, shrimps and winkles off the barrow boy, usually on Sunday.