Species: M. tulipa
Scientific name: Murex tulipa
This species occurs from the North Carolina coast all the way south and west to the Gulf coast of Texas, also in the West Indies and Brazil. The word "tulip" describes the overall shape of the shells of these species, which is like that of a closed tulip flower.
The tulip shell has an overall smooth surface, and presents fine growth lines, and small denticles on the inner edge of its delicate outer lip. It is whitish to tan in color, with rows of darker brownish blotches of various sizes. Over the blotches are symmetrical rows of thin lines which spiral along the whorls of the shell, which are normally about 9 in number.
The shell of an adult tulip snail can be from 2.5” to 9.5” inches.