Strombus, common name the true conches, is a genus of medium to large sea snails with an operculum, marine gastropod mollusks in the family Strombidae, the true conchs and their immediate relatives.
The genus Strombus was named by Carl Linnaeus in 1758. There were around 50 living species recognized, which vary in size from fairly small to very large. Six species live in the greater Caribbean region, including the Queen Conch, and the West Indian Fighting Conch, Strombus pugilis. However, since 2006, many species have now been assigned to discrete genera.2] These new genera are however not yet found in most textbooks, collector's guides, etc.
Worldwide, several of the larger species are economically important as food sources; these include the endangered queen conch or pink conch Strombus gigas (now usually known as Eustrombus gigas or Lobatus gigas) which very rarely also produces a pink, gem quality pearl.
In the geological past, a much larger number of species of Strombus existed. Of the living species, most are in the Indian and Pacific Oceans.
Many species of true conchs live on sandy bottoms among beds of sea grass in tropical waters. They eat algae and have a claw-shaped operculum.
Like almost all shelled gastropods, conches have spirally constructed shells. Again, as is normally the case in many gastropods, this spiral shell growth is usually right-handed, but on very rare occasions it can be left-handed.
True conches have long eye stalks, with colorful ring-marked eyes at the tips. The shell has a long and narrow aperture, and a short siphonal canal, with another indentation near the anterior end called a stromboid notch. This notch is where one of the two eye stalks protrudes from the shell. The true conch has a foot ending in a pointed, sickle-shaped, operculum which can be dug into the substrate as part of an unusual "leaping" locomotion.
True conches grow a flared lip on their shells only upon reaching sexual maturity. This is called an alated outer lip or alation.
Strombus shells have a flaring outer lip with a notch near the anterior end called the stromboid notch through which the animal may protrude one of its stalked eyes.
A cladogram based on sequences of nuclear histone H3 gene and mitochondrial cytochrome-c oxidase I (COI) gene showing showing phylog enic relations of (32 analyzed) species that used to belong to the genus Strombus and Lambis:
- Strombus alatus Gmelin, 1791
- Strombus gracilior G.B. Sowerby I, 1825
- Strombus pugilis Linnaeus, 1758
- Strombus accipiter Dillwyn, 1817 : synonym of Lobatus costatus (Gmelin, 1791)
- Strombus aurisdianae Linnaeus, 1759 : synonym of Euprotomus aurisdianae (Linnaeus, 1758)
- Strombus bituberculatus Lamarck, 1822 : synonym of Lobatus raninus (Gmelin, 1791)
- Strombus bulla R?ding, 1798 : synonym of Euprotomus bulla (R?ding, 1798)
- Strombus canarium Linnaeus, 1758 : synonym of Laevistrombus canarium (Linnaeus, 1758)
- Strombus costatus aguayoi Jaume & del Valle, 1947 : synonym of Lobatus costatus (Gmelin, 1791)
- Strombus decorus (R?ding, 1798) : synonym of Conomurex decorus (R?ding, 1798)
- Strombus dehelensis  : synonym of Conomurex fasciatus (Born, 1778)
- Strombus dentatus Linnaeus, 1758 : synonym of Tridentarius dentatus (Linnaeus, 1758)
- Strombus epidromis Linnaeus, 1758 : synonym of Labiostrombus epidromis (Linnaeus, 1758)
- Strombus erythrinus is a synonym for Canarium erythrinum Dillwyn, 1817
- Strombus fasciatus Born, 1778 : synonym of Persististrombus latus (Gmelin, 1791)
- Strombus fusiformis is a synonym for Canarium fusiforme Sowerby, 1842
- Strombus gallus Linnaeus, 1758 : synonym of Lobatus gallus (Linnaeus, 1758)
- Strombus gibberulus Linnaeus, 1758 : synonym of Gibberulus gibberulus (Linnaeus, 1758)
- Strombus gigas is a synonym for Eustrombus gigas L., 1758
- Strombus guidoi Man in t'Veld & De Turck, 1998 : synonym of Laevistrombus canarium guidoi (Man in 't Veld & De Turck, 1998)
- Strombus goliath Schr?ter, 1805 : synonym of Lobatus goliath (Schr?ter, 1805)
- Strombus haemastoma Sowerby, 1842 : synonym of Canarium haemastoma (Sowerby II, 1842)
- Strombus hickeyi Willan, 2000 : synonym of Dolomena hickeyi (Willan, 2000)
- Strombus inermis Swainson, 1822 : synonym of Lobatus costatus (Gmelin, 1791)
- Strombus integer Swainson, 1823 : synonym of Lobatus costatus (Gmelin, 1791)
- Strombus jeffersonia Van Hyning, 1945 : synonym of Lobatus costatus (Gmelin, 1791)
- Strombus labiatus is a synonym for Canarium labiatum R?ding, 1798
- Strombus labiosus Gray in Wood, 1828 : synonym of Dolomena labiosa (Wood, 1828)
- Strombus latus Gmelin, 1791 : synonym of Persististrombus latus (Gmelin, 1791)
- Strombus lentiginosus Linnaeus, 1758 : synonym of Lentigo lentiginosus (Linnaeus, 1758)
- Strombus listeri Gray, 1852 : synonym of Mirabilistrombus listeri (Gray, 1852)
- Strombus luhuanus Linnaeus, 1758 : synonym of Conomurex luhuanus (Linnaeus, 1758)
- Strombus magolecciai Macsotay & Villarroel, 2001 : synonym of Lobatus magolecciai (Macsotay & Campos, 2001)
- Strombus marginatus C. Linnaeus, 1758 : synonym of Margistrombus marginatus (Linnaeus, 1758)
- Strombus mutabilis Swainson, 1821 : synonym of Canarium mutabile (Swainson, 1821)
- Strombus oldi Emerson, 1965 : synonym of Tricornis oldi (Emerson, 1965)
- Strombus persicus (Swainson, 1821) : synonym of Conomurex persicus (Swainson, 1821)
- Strombus plicatus R?ding, 1798 : synonym of Dolomena plicata (R?ding, 1798)
- Strombus sinuatus Humphrey, 1786: synonym of Sinustrombus sinuatus ([Lightfoot], 1786)
- Strombus terebellatus Sowerby, 1842 : synonym of Terestrombus terebellatus (G.B. Sowerby II, 1842)
- Strombus tricornis (Humphrey, 1786) : synonym of Tricornis tricornis (Lightfoot, 1786)
- Strombus urceus Linnaeus, 1758 : synonym of Canarium urceus (Linnaeus, 1758)
- Strombus ustulatus (Schumacher, 1817) : synonym of Canarium urceus urseus (Linnaeus, 1758)
- Strombus variabilis Swainson, 1820 : synonym of Dolomena variabilis (Swainson, 1820)
- Strombus wilsoni Abbott, 1967 : synonym of Canarium wilsonorum (Abbott, 1967)