Family: Haliotidae. 70 living species. Nicknamed the sea ears, the Abalone's flattened, oval shape with iridescent interior can reach up to one foot in length. The animal uses the small holes for exhaling water. Most types of Abalone shells are found on rocks near the shores of warm waters, with the exception of the western Atlantic Ocean. The thick muscle, or foot, of the animal is edible and sold as a delicacy in many countries. Most abalone meat is exported to Asia. Interesting Facts: The Paua Shell or Rainbow Abalone of New Zealand is primarily used in jewelry-making as well as inlays on furniture and guitars.