Guides in Collecting Shells - Storing Shells « Shell Collectors , Conchology, Inc.
Shell Topics

This depends of the type of collection but some general rules are important:

  • easy access
  • the information should be kept with the shell
  • avoid direct sunlight
  • carpeting avoids broken shells when dropped
  • eliminate dust
  • do not use acid wood

In conditions that combine a damp atmosphere, warmth and darkness, moisture can attack your shells. Of a particular type is "Byne's disease". Fortunately there are a lot of remedies and there is never reason for panic. Click images below to enlarge images.


For large collections (over 10000 shells) there is only one solution: small glass bottles or plastic bags classified in larger boxes by family or genus. Only institutions can afford drawers in such case.
Small collections can mix aesthetic pleasure with a systematic arrangement in drawers.
Small collections can mix aesthetic pleasure with a systematic arrangement in drawers.
You will have much pleasure with a display.

You will have much pleasure with a display.


Catalog and Labeling

It is important to catalog your shells in a file that allows you to make labels and to have a listing that you can consult on paper (for visits to museums, other collectors, shell clubs), or in your computer.

Labels should ALWAYS stay with the shells. The majority of shells are worthless without accurate labeling. Examples of the information are given with the images shown here. We use FileMaker Pro® for such purposes.


A catalog entry (for each lot of shells, found together at the same time).
Different types of labels.
The listing in the computer.
Printout from the listing.