The Conchological Society of
South Africa

Passionate about Shells

"To further the study of Mollusca in general, and South African Mollusca in particular, and secondly, to add to the existing data and scientific records concerning South African Mollusca."



The Conchological Society of South Africa, or CSSA, is the umbrella organisation for the regional Shell Clubs within South Africa. Our Mission is to create a favourable, inviting, open and relaxed environment within which the shell collecting community may function.

CSSA has an illustrious history which began in May 1958 as the Conchological Society of Southern Africa. The initiative to start the CSSA followed after a group of collectors realised that the stretch of coastline where the Atlantic and Indian Oceans meet, is a treasure trove for collectors. Our coast is home to a large number of endemic species, and the CSSA provided the official grounds through which information about our species could be communicated to all.

The Mission statement, established in the 1960's, is carried over to the current Society, and reads:

"To further the study of Mollusca in general, and South African Mollusca in particular, and secondly, to add to the existing data and scientific records concerning South African Mollusca."

On a more personal level, our goals are to encourage shell collectors from all walks of life to share their experiences, learn from each other and grow their collections through various forms of trade.

To this end we invite all collectors to participate in monthly Club meetings and shell-related events, contribute to our local publication - The Strandloper - attend Workshops and events, where all can share and learn, and actively participate in our shell raffles, auctions and other trading opportunities within the Clubs.

We invite newcomers to this hobby, or to our organisation, to navigate the Site to see who is who in the zoo, where our meetings are held and how to get hold of us.


Our Constitution was revised and approved on the 13th of August 2022. You may download a copy here.

Application Form

Membership to CSSA is R100 or $25 per year. Membership affords individuals with the opportunity to receive new copies of The Strandloper, the CSSA Newsletter (Sea Bones), as well as other forms of communication. Automatic appropriation to the Annual General Meeting is also guaranteed.


To download the Membership Application Form, click here for the MS Word version, and here for the PDF version.

Completed Application Forms should be routed to the CSSA Treasurer (contact details at the bottom of the page).

Who's Who

CSSA Patron
The Society Patron is Mr Johan Marais, who was officially appoined to this position on 14 August 2018.
Current CSSA Committee

Andre Meredith


Ken Brown


Anton Groenewald


Alwyn Marais

Scientific Officer

Maurice Evans



Gillian Petzer

Additional Member

Shell Clubs

Regional Shell Clubs

The following regional Clubs or Groups resort under CSSA:

Pretoria Club

Durban Club

Cape Town Club

Jeffreys Bay Club

Shelly Beach Club

Click on the arrow next to the Club name for more information, including location, meeting times and Club Chairperson contact details.

Club Fees

Fees for membership at the regional Shell Clubs is R50 per year.

Shell Club membership affords the individual the opportunity to attend Club meetings, partake in monthly shell raffles, qualify for special Club discounts, partake in outings and enjoy meeting refreshments.

Links to International Shell Clubs

Conchology is a true "international hobby": many collections contain specimens from around the world, and this requires collaboration with overseas collectors and dealers. It is important to network with other Shell Clubs worldwide - sharing of knowledge is very important, and building ties with other collectors is not only recommended to strengthen our knowledge base, but, of course, to make new friends.

Below are links to the websites of some of our international conchological friends - please click and visit!

If you would like to be added to our website, please email the Webmaster and we will gladly do so!

We would love it if you could post a link to our Website on yours as well...)


News & Info


AGM 2022

The 2022 AGM was held on 13 August 2022 at the Sinoville Weslyan Church hall, the current venue for the Pretoria Club. It was very well attended and our hosts, Gordon and family, pulled out all the stops to make it one of the most memorable in a long time. The formalities included voting for a new title for the Society (now rebranded as the "Conchological Society of South Africa"), and some feedback to attendees on great work being done by Gillian Petzer to market the Soicety and the hobby with the Youth. Mr Alwyn Marais presented another thought-provoking talk on molluscan scentience. After a lovely finger lunch served by our hosts, the AGM Auction got underway and auctioneer Roy Aiken proceeded with the gruelling task of clearing out 197 Lots of shells and books. He managed to aucion off the entire lot!


Shell trade was also well-supported, with some of our members offering shells at proces only seen at these AGMs. It was, as always, a great opportunity for members to reconnect.

Info and Downloads

Click on any of the boxes above to learn more about our fascinating hobby!

Get In Touch

We'd love to hear from you!

Please complete the form below and hit the send button.

Alternately, send an email to one of the addresses at the bottom of the page.

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Committee Emails