California Cone Snail

Californiconus californicus





The cone snails are predators found in tropical and subtropical seas where warm temperatures influence growth, feeding rate, metabolism, fecundity, behavior, and survival (1).  The Californiconus californicus has a geographic distribution from the Pacific coast of North America from San Francisco Bay in California to Los Cabos, Baja California Sur (1).  This species inhabits the lower intertidal zone and relatively shallow areas with a range of 0 to 12 m deep (1). Bivalves, cephalopods, crustaceans, fish, polychaetes and other snails are the designated prey of the Californiconus californicus (1).   The California cone snail is considered a carnivorous predator  from having the ability to use venom for predation (2).   


(1) Lugo, P., Diaz, F., Re, A.D., Olivares, F., Gonzalez, R., Duenas, S., Licea, A. (2015).  Thermoregulatory behaviour and thermal tolerance of three species of Conidae in the Eastern Pacific and Gulf California coasts of Baja California Mexico.  Molluscan Research, 36(4), 247-254. DOI: 10.1080/13235818.2016.1172545

(2)Phuong, M.A., Mahardika, G.N., Alfaro, M.E. (2016). Dietary breadth is positively correlated with venom complexity in cone snails.  BMC Genomics, 17(388). DOI: 10.1186/s12864-016-2755-6

(Photograph) Peter J. Bryant, University of California, Irvine 


  • Lower Intertidal Zone