Ovula ovum (Linnaeus, 1758)

Common Name: 
Egg Cowrie

Common in the Solitary Islands Marine Park. Distributed throughout the Indo-West Pacific region. In Australia recorded from Exmouth northern Western Australia, the Coral Sea and Great Barrier Reef in Queensland, south to northern New South Wales.

Ecological Notes: 

Shallow rocky and coral reef where they are found in association with soft corals especially Sarcophyton and Sinularia spp. Depth to approximately 20 m.

Additional Notes: 

Black mantle with white or orange tipped pustules, juveniles with larger pustules thought to imitate the toxic Phyllidia sp. nudibranchs. Lays egg capsules on food source soft corals, see lower photograph. Grows to 100 mm. See also Ovula costellata.


Coral Reef Animals of the Indo-Pacific, Terrence M. Gosliner, David W. Behrens and Gary C. Williams, Sea Challengers Publication, Monterey, California. 1996. p.137.

Atlas of Living Australia website at https://bie.ala.org.au/search?q=Ovula+ovum. Accessed 09/11/2018.