Cypraea tigris

Cypraea tigris is one of the most common species of all cowries. It is seen almost everywhere, often exhibited on the stands and sold in the fairs, markets, and shows. Nevertheless, it is also one of the nicest shell of this family, with its great variety of patterns, colours, sizes and provenience areas. The one I have chosen to show here is a form "schilderiana" from Oahu Island in the Hawaii. It is a rather large size specimen, measuring over 133 mm, with perfect quality, beautiful pattern and colours. All these features are usually found in many specimens of the advanced collections worldwide, but what makes it really special is that it is an exceptionally inflated piece, like I have never seen again, a real big ball with a very wide body, an extremely high dorsum and a spectacular shape. I have further specimens of schilderiana, one reaching over the 140 mm, but no one else is comparable to this one. I obtained this specimen from Peter Demertzis at the Paris Shell Show in the 80's.

Among the thousands of tigris handled and seen in my collector's experience the following from New Caledonia is one of my preferred for the striking matching of colours pink, soft yellow and light blue  with clear black spotting.

page 1