belonging to the family Olividae
. These elongate shells are usually polished and brightly colored, and tend to have an enlarged body whorl
that conceals prior volutions
The snail is carnivorous
feeding only at night and remains hidden during the day by burrowing into the sand. They prefer bivalves
such as oysters and clams, but also eat marine worms
. Olives have a characteristicly large mantle
that surrounds the shell when extended (hence the polished shell) and is used to grasp and pull their prey under the sand to be digested.
The Lettered Olive, Oliva Sayana
, became the official shell of the South Carolina
in 1984. It was found and named by conchologist Dr. Edmund Ravenel
, South Carolina in 1834.