Orange mollusc


Mollusc Videos


  • Molluscs: The Survival Game


  • Mollusc Animation: Squid Body Plan
  • Mollusc Animation: Nautilus Body Plan
  • Mollusc Animation: Shell Repair
  • Mollusc Animation: Abalone


  • Molluscs: Pycnopodia Chases Abalone
  • Molluscs: Octopus Catching Crab
  • Molluscs: Blue-Ringed Octopus Warning Coloration
  • Molluscs: Octopus Camouflage
  • Molluscs: Nautilus Regulates Its Buoyancy
  • Molluscs: Moon Snail Preys On Cockles


  • Peter Ward, Paleontologist: The Ancient Nautilus
  • Geerat Vermeij, Evolutionary Biologist: Reading A Shell’s Story

General Info

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    Book with pencil

Role in Ecosystem

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    Bee with arrows around it


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    Thermometer and waves

Human Interaction

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    Human next to globe


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    Skull of dinosaur
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    Lesson Plan
    Phylum Mollusca: Macroevolution Module
    Through a sequence of “explore-before-explain” laboratory investigations, coupled with segments from the Shape of Life videos, students study molluscs in the present and their long  evolutionary history. The module includes those listed below, which can also stand alone.

    Full Lesson Plan

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    Spread out octopus
    Molluscs: Beauty and Diversity
    The diversity of molluscs shows how a fleshy soft body plan can evolve into a variety of forms.

    Download Factsheet

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    Closeup of suckers from tentacle of octopus
    Molluscs: Armor and Speed, the Survival Game
    "As the tide rises, the closed molluscs opens a fraction to the ocean's food, bathed in its riches. Do not ask what force would do, or if force could. A knife is no use against a fortress."

    Download Reading