Because of their large size and intertidal habitat, patel-logastropod species have been important components of abo riginal diets for more than 150,000 years, and there is evidence that human predation has (and continues to) reduced both maximum and mean limpet size at some localities. Patel-lid species are also finding use in biological-monitoring studies of the health of rocky-shore communities because of their ubiquitous presence and role in rocky-shore systems. There appears to be little economic interest in most patellogastro-pod species, although Cellana species are a significant fishery in Hawaii and patellids have been over harvested at the Azores in recent years.
Some of the flatter limpet species are often used as shell jewelry because of their medallion-like shape and nacreous shell surfaces. The most famous depiction of a limpet in art is the English painter J. M. W. Turner's War: The Exile and the Rock Limpet (1842), which figures a specimen of Patella being contemplated by Napoleon Bonaparte during his exile on St. Helena in the Atlantic Ocean.
Was this article helpful?