Shell spindle shaped, up to 60mm high. Up to 8 slightly rounded whorls, making the shell slightly turreted. Apex of the shell sharp. Sculpture of numerous spiral ridges and growth lines. Mouth oval, siphonal canal short and broad. Shell white with a bluish or pinkish tinge, covered by a slightly hairy pale yellow periostracum, the hairs may be worn off. A very variable species.
- Apex not dilated as in Colus gracilis and Colus islandicus
- Spiral ridges on body whorl only about 30
- Periostracum hairy, pale yellow
- Colus islandicus Siphonal canal longer and narrower, shell more delicate, apex (juvenile shell) very bulbous
- Colus gracilis Apex dilated, periostracum smooth, shell thicker
- Colus holboelli Siphonal canal narrower, periostracum hairy, shell thin, Iceland, Shetland to Norway only
- Colus turgidulus Siphonal canal very short, whorls inflated, suture canalised, shell thinner, Norway to Spitzbergen, Shetland and Faroes
Lives on sandy or muddy bottoms on the continental shelves
Norway to Marocco.