Paper Nautilus –
( Argonauta Argo & Argonauta Nodusa )
The only extant genus in the Argonautidae family are a group of Pelagis Octopuses. They are also
called Paper Nautilus referring to the fine paper
thin egg case that the female secretes so strictly
speaking, they are not a sea shell.
My wife Heather found this one on Goosberry Flat
Beach at Tryphena, Gt. Barrier Island, NZ. They are
comparatively rare and due to their delicate nature
few survive the rigours of being washed ashore. The bigger the shell or egg case as it is, the rarer they are. This one measures 5 1/2 " x 4 ’’ high. ( 140mm x 100mm ) so is getting towards the high end in size and is completely undamaged. In the 12
years we lived on the Island and daily dog walks
along this beach, this was the only one we ever found.
Gt. Barrier Island is 285 sq kms. in size and is in the Hauraki Gulf, approx. 90 kms east of Auckland City off the North Island of New Zealand.
Captain Cook named Gt. Barrier in 1769.
fuji S6500 at 15.4mm, 1/250, f/4, iso 100.