Blacklip abalone

Blacklip abalone

Haliotis rubra
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Mollusca
Class: Gastropoda
Clade: Vetigastropoda
Superfamily: Haliotoidea
Family: Haliotidae
Genus: Haliotis
Species: H. rubra
Binomial name
Haliotis rubra
W. E. Leach, 1814
  • Haliotis improbula Iredale, T., 1924
  • Haliotis (Haliotis) ancile Reeve, L.A., 1846
  • Haliotis (Haliotis) naevosa Philippi, R.A., 1844
  • Haliotis (Haliotis) tubifera Lamarck, J.B.P.A. de, 1822
  • Sanhaliotis whitehousei Colman, J.G., 1959

The blacklip abalone, Haliotis rubra, is a species of large, edible sea snail, a marine gastropod mollusk in the family Haliotidae, the abalones.[1][2]

Two shells of Haliotis rubra
  • Haliotis rubra conicopora Péron, 1816 – the conical pore abalone; synonyms: Haliotis conicopora Péron, 1816 (original combination), Haliotis cunninghami Gray, 1826; Haliotis granti Pritchard & Gatliff, 1902; Haliotis vixlirata Cotton, 1943
  • Haliotis rubra rubra Leach, 1814 the shield abalone; synonyms: Haliotis ancile Reeve, 1846; Haliotis improbula Iredale, 1924; Haliotis naevosa Philippi, 1844; Haliotis ruber Leach, 1814 (original combination); Haliotis whitehousei (Colman, 1959); Sanhaliotis whitehousei Colman, 1959


The size of the shell varies between 35 mm and 200 mm. "The large, much depressed shell has a rounded-oval shape. The distance of the apex from the margin is one-fifth the length of the shell. It is sculptured with fine spiral cords cut by close minute striae of increment. It shows radiating waves or folds above. A slight angle at the row of perforations, below it is broadly excavated and then carinated. The about six perforations are elevated and circular. The outline is suborbicular, much depressed and solid but not thick. The surface is either dark red with few radiating angular white patches, or dull red and green, streaked and mottled. The spiral cords of the outer surface are either nearly equal, or have slightly larger ones at wide intervals. They are decussated by close growth-striae. The whorls number a trifle over 3. Inside they are corrugated like the outer surface, silvery, and very brilliantly iridescent. The reflections are chiefly sea-green and red. The columellar plate is broad, flat, and obliquely truncated at its base. The cavity of the spire is wide, open, but shallow

This is a variable form, in color varying from dark coral red to dull red streaked with pale green." [3]


This species is endemic to Australia, and is of one of the main species of abalone taken in South Australia and Tasmania[4] Range is from Fremantle, Western Australia, to Angourie, New South Wales, and around Tasmania[5]

It is called the blacklip abalone because the edge of the foot is black.


  1. ^
  2. ^ Bouchet, P. (2012). Haliotis rubra Leach, 1814. Accessed through: World Register of Marine Species at on 2013-02-04
  3. ^ H.A. Pilsbry (1890) Manual of Conchology XII; Academy of Natural Sciences, Philadelphia, 1890 (described as Haliotis naevosa)
  4. ^ "Fisheries - Abalone". Government of South Australia, Primary Industries and Regions SA. Retrieved 2012-08-10. 
  5. ^ Edgar, Graham J. (2008). Australian Marine Life: The plants and animals of temperate waters (Second ed.). Sydney: New Holland.  
  • Wilson, B. 1993. Australian Marine Shells. Prosobranch Gastropods. Kallaroo, Western Australia : Odyssey Publishing Vol. 1 408 pp.
  • Geiger, D.L. 2000 [1999]. Distribution and biogeography of the recent Haliotidae (Gastropoda: Vetigastropoda) world-wide. Bollettino Malacologico 35(5-12): 57-120
  • Geiger D.L. & Poppe G.T. (2000). A Conchological Iconography: The family Haliotidae. Conchbooks, Hackenheim Germany. 135pp 83pls
  • Geiger D.L. & Owen B. (2012) Abalone: Worldwide Haliotidae. Hackenheim: Conchbooks. viii + 361 pp.

External links

  • New South Wales government fisheries info
  • info and shell images