Muricidae - Murex and Rocksnails

Muricidae, the murex and rocksnails, come in a variety of shapes. The more interesting ones have spiraling ridges, axial varices and/or spines. Others are less ornately sculptured and may be smooth, nodulose or with small spines. They are carnivorous and feed on other invertebrates, including other mollusks. Some bore into their prey's shell using their rasp-like tongue (radula) and then secrete neurotoxin to paralyze its prey. Others like to chip away at the edges of shells until the prey is exposed. Most live on rocky shores or substrates and coral reefs. There are 26 species found in Texas.