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Red abalone

Haliotis rufescens


A large edible sea snail, the red abalone's shell length can reach a maximum of 31 cm, making it the largest species of abalone in the world. The shell is large, thick, and dome-shaped. It is usually a brick red color externally. Typically the shell has three or four oval holes or respiratory pores. These holes collectively make up what is known as the selenizone which form as the shell grows. The inside of the shell is strongly iridescent and has a large central muscle. Below the edge of the shell, the black epipodium and tentacles can be seen. The underside of the foot is yellowish white in color.


Red abalone is the largest, and most common abalone found in the northern part of the state of California, and it is the only species of abalone still legally harvested (on a restricted basis) there. Red abalone live in rocky areas with kelp. They primarily feed on bull kelp and giant kelp. They are found from the intertidal zone to water of 100 foot depth.They like cold waters between 18-2 celsius. These are in the Aquarium of the Bay, SF.

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The MnMs
Spotted by
The MnMs

San Francisco, California, USA

Spotted on Sep 15, 2014
Submitted on Nov 30, 2014

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