From One Foot to Eight Legs: The Weird and Wonderful World of Molluscs is sure to leave you shell shocked!

Written By
Aimee Feldman

Queensland is the most biodiverse state in Australia, especially hot spots like the Wet Tropics and the Great Barrier Reef.

Did you know the Giant Triton (Charonia tritonis) is Dr John Healy’s favourite object in our collection? The Curator of Marine Biodiversity has seen a lot of shells.

Well mollusc to be exact. Pronounced mo-luhsk, they are invertebrates of snails, slugs, squid, mussels, oysters and octopuses. They have soft bodies with heads and feet, hard external shells and live mostly in water. Some have tongues with teeth! They can be found in almost every habitat on Earth and are the most diverse group of animals on the planet.

The Giant triton can be found on the Great Barrier Reef and loves snacking on Crown of Thorns starfish. Not only is the triton beautiful, it is a rarely photographed living animal. It’s hard to believe a spectacular shell could be made by sea snail.

This year at World Science Festival Brisbane, Dr John Healy,  will take visitors on a journey to uncover the enchanting world of molluscs.

A Curator of Molluscs covers many and varied activities, from taxonomic work on the collections, field work, identification of samples, through to public inquiries, and even work on cultural and historical aspects of shell use and art through the ages.

John has been extensively involved in taxonomic work on Australian Molluscs, and has named over 80 species new to science, including numerous bivalves and tusk shells.

Queensland Museum has one of the largest collection of land snails in Australia, and in recent years we have also greatly boosted our marine mollusc collection through important donations of collections, and our collection is still growing!

The Queensland Museum’s collection ranges from the Giant Squid (Architeuthis dux – which stretches to a massive 4.5 metres in length) and giant clams which reach almost a metre in length, to tiny land snails from Queensland.

From snails and slugs through to clams, octopuses and cuttlefish, John has worked with them all.

Don’t miss out on this rare opportunity to learn about the Weird and Wonderful World of Molluscs at World Science Festival Brisbane.

Tickets are $18.

Written By
Aimee Feldman


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