Knobbed Whelk

Georgia State Seashell


Knobbed whelk seashell

Knobbed whelk seashell on the beach; photo by vmpyr_davidon on Flickr (noncommercial use permitted with attribution / no derivative )

Official State Seashell of Georgia

Georgia designated the beautiful knobbed whelk as the official state seashell in 1987 (also a state symbol of New Jersey). The knobbed whelk is a marine snail shell found on Georgia's shoreline. All State Shells & Aquatic Life

Georgia General Assembly Legislation

WHEREAS, the state has many official symbols but does not yet have a state seashell; and

WHEREAS, Busycon carica, commonly known as the Knobbed Whelk, is found naturally in the coastal waters of Georgia; and

WHEREAS, this beautiful shell is commonly found all along Georgia’s shoreline; and

WHEREAS, this shell is an attractive, whorled shell with heavy spines and many knobs and has a semiglossy surface characterized by ocher striations resulting from the minerals present in the coastal waters of Georgia and an orange to red mouth; and

WHEREAS, the Knobbed Whelk is approximately eight inches long when fully mature and is found from the shoreline to 30 feet of water; and

WHEREAS, designating a state seashell will encourage citizens of the state and visitors alike to visit the beautiful beaches and coastal waters of the state.

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED BY THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF GEORGIA that the Knobbed Whelk, Busycon carica, is designated as the official Georgia seashell.

Approved April 16, 1987. Source: Ga. Laws 1987, p. 1130.



Live knobbed whelk; photo by f_iodinea on Flickr (noncommercial use permitted with attribution).

Live knobbed whelk


SeaTalk - Whelks

Knobbed Whelk