What Do Whelks Eat?


Quick Answer

Whelks typically eat hard-shelled prey. Their diet often consists of mussels and barnacles, but since they are scavengers, they will eat a variety of other prey.

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Full Answer

Whelks are a type of snail that travels along ocean floors. Though they are often confused with conches, there are many differences between the two. Unlike conches, the whelks stay close to the ground to search for prey. These subtidal animals use their feet to find other sea creatures that have buried themselves in the sand or mud. Once they locate their prey, they use their lip to pry open the shells until there is room for their mouth to fit inside. Once this occurs, the whelks feed on the soft body of the prey. Whelks are carnivores, which means they feed only on meat.

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