It’s official: The votes are in, and the channeled whelk is now Delaware’s official state shell.
On Tuesday, Gov. Jack Markell signed House Bill 199 into law. The bill states that the channeled whelk shell, also known as a conch, “contributes to the beauty of our seashores, as well as to the marine economy of the State of Delaware.”
Markell also signed a shell for Allyson Willis, a Delaware resident and a member of the Girl Scouts of the USA. It was Willis who lobbied state lawmakers to secure the bill’s passage.
Willis began petitioning the state more than a year ago, working with state Rep. Quinn Johnson, D-Middletown, on the bill. The legislation to establish a state shell was passed earlier this year.
“The Department of Natural Resources really did some research with Allyson to ensure we have the correct shell,” said Sen. Bethany Hall-Long, D-Middletown, co-sponsor of the bill.