Snail taxonomy

Front cover 1The taxonomy of the Gastropoda is still under revision, and more and more of the old taxonomy is being abandoned, as the results of molecular studies slowly become clearer.

AUSTRALIAN LAND SNAIL TAXONOMY:

PHYLUM MOLLUSCA

CLASS GASTROPODA

SUPERORDER NERITIMORPHA

Superfamily Helicinoidea

  • Family Helicinidae

Superfamily Hydrocenoidea

  • Family Hydrocenidae

 SUPERORDER CAENOGASTROPODA

Superfamily Cyclophoroidea

  • Family Cyclophoridae
  • Family Pupinidae
  • Family Diplommatinidae

Superfamily Rissooidea

  • Family Assimineidae

 SUPERORDER HETEROBRANCHIA

       ORDER SYSTELLOMMATOPHORA

Superfamily Veronicelloidea

  • Family Veronicellidae *
  • Family Rathouisiidae

       ORDER EUPULMONATA

  •        SUBORDER STYLOMMATOPHORA

                       INFRAORDER ORTHURETHRA

Superfamily Achatinelloidea

  • Family Achatinellidae

Superfamily Cochlicopoidea

  • Family Cochlicopidae *

Superfamily Pupilloidea

  • Family Pupillidae
  • Family Valloniidae *
  • Family Pleurodiscidae *

Superfamily Enoidea

  • Family Cerastidae **

                 INFRAORDER SIGMURETHRA

Superfamily Achatinoidea

  • Family Ferrussaciidae *
  • Family Subulinidae **

Superfamily Testacelloidea

  • Family Testacellidae *

Superfamily Rhytidoidea

  • Family Rhytididae

Superfamily Streptaxoidea

  • Family Streptaxidae *

Superfamily Acavoidea

  • Family Caryodidae

Superfamily Orthalicoidea

  • Family Bothriembryontidae
  • Family Placostylidae
  • Family Megaspiridae

Superfamily Arionoidea

  • Family Arionidae *

Superfamily Punctoidea

  • Family Punctidae
  • Family Charopidae
  • Family Helicodiscidae
  • Family Cystopeltidae

Superfamily Limacoidea

  • Family Agriolimacidae *
  • Family Limacidae *
  • Family Milacidae *
  • Family Vitrinidae *

Superfamily Helicarionoidea

  • Family Helicarionidae
  • Family Microcystidae

Superfamily Gastrodontoidea

  • Family Euconulidae **
  • Family Oxychilidae *
  • Family Pristilomatidae *
  • Family Trochomorphidae
  • Family Gastrodontidae *

Superfamily Plectopyloidea

  • Family Corillidae

Superfamily Helicoidea

  • Family Camaenidae
  • Family Bradybaenidae *
  • Family Helicidae *
  • Family Hygromiidae *
  • Family Cochlicellidae *

              INFRAORDER ELASMOGNATHA

Superfamily Succineoidea

  • Family Succineidae **

Superfamily Athoracophorodea

  • Family Athoracophoridae

* Introduced species

** Introduced and native species

 

Common names for land snail families:

  • Bradybaenidae [includes Asian Tramp Snail}
  • Bothriembryontidae [Tapered Snails]
  • Camaenidae [Helicoid Snails]
  • Caryodidae [Bush and Panda Snails]
  • Charopidae [Pinwheel Snails]
  • Cochlicellidae [Pointed Snails]
  • Cochlicopidae [Pillar Snails]
  • Cyclophoridae [Pendant Snails]
  • Cerastidae [Porcelain & thin-shelled Snails]
  • Euconulidae [Beehive & Turreted Snails]
  • Ferrussaciidae [Needlesnails, Husk & Blind Snails]
  • Gastrodontidae [Orchid Snails]
  • Helicidae [Introduced and European Snails
  • Helicinidae [Droplet-snails]
  • Helicodiscidae [Microdisc Snails]
  • Helicarionidae [Glass-Snails and Semi-slugs]
  • Hydrocenidae  [Microturbans]
  • Hygromiidae  [Vineyard Snails & allies]
  • Microcystidae [Tiny Glass-snails]
  • Oxchilidae [Garlic & Cellar Snails]
  • Pristilomatidae [Crystal Snails]
  • Punctidae [Pinhead Snails]
  • Pupillidae [Pupasnails]
  • Rhytididae [Carnivorous Snails]
  • Streptaxidae [Predatory Snails]
  • Subulinidae [Awlsnails]
  • Succineidae [Amber Snails]
  • Trochomorophidae [Squat-keeled Snails]
  • Valloniidae [Grass-snails]
  • Vitrinidae [Glass-snail]

Common names for slug families:

  • Agriolimacidae [Field Slugs & allies]
  • Arionidae [Roundback Slugs]
  • Athoracophoridae [Red-triangle Slugs]
  • Cystopeltidae [Humpback Slugs]
  • Limacidae [Leopard Slug & allies]
  • Milacidae [Jet Slugs]
  • Testacellidae [Earshell Slugs]
  • Veronicellidae [Leatherleaf & Brown Slugs]

Genus:

Species: Approximately 2500


In Australia, the two main groups of land snails are:

OPERCULATES

These snails have an open pallial cavity which absorbs oxygen. Most notably, they have only one pair of tentacles. About 130 species can be found in Australia. Three main groups are:

Droplet-snails: Helicinidae

Pleuropoma gouldiana

Cape York Droplet Snail Pleuropoma gouldiana (Forbes, 1851)

Pendant Snails: Cyclophoridae

P6a

Opalescent Pendant-snail (Leptopoma perlucida)

Microturban Snails: Hydrocenidae

P6c

Royal Arch Microturban (Georissa minuta)


PULMONATES

These snails, semi-slugs and slugs have two pairs of tentacles. They breathe using lungs. In Australia, we have about 3000 species.

The more common groups are:

Native slugs: Athoracophoridae

red-triangle-slug

Red-triangle Slug (Triboniophorus graeffei)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Glass-snails and Semi-slugs: Helicarionidae

  • Glass-snails: This is a group of semi-slugs and one of the most speciose families.
P8a

Chillagoe Glass-snail (Einasleighana antiqua)

 

P8b

Gayndah Glass-snail (Delinitesta gayndahensis

 

  • Semi-slugs: Semi-slugs are snails that cannot retract into their shell as it is much reduced in size.
P8f

Black-spotted Semi-slug (Macularion Aquila)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Pinwheel snails: Charopidae

Charopids or pinwheel snails are micro-snails (from 1.2-7.0mm) with an estimated 750 Australian species. Charopidae have their greatest diversity in eastern Australia.

P9a

Sunburst Pinwheel Snail (Letomola lanalittleae)

P9c

Goodnight Scrub Pinwheel Snail (Gyrocochlea goodnight)

 

Many Charopids have beautiful shell sculpture when seen under microscopes

P9g P9m

Camaenids: Camaenida

Camaenids are generally larger than snails in most other families. In eastern Australia, the stable moisture regime and acidic soils have resulted in the evolution of a number of arboreal species

Noctepuna cerea

Ivory Treesnail (Noctepuna cerea)

P10c

Chillagoe Spiny Snail (Tolgachloritis campbelli)

Some camaenids possess bristles or hair-like structures

Other camaenids have elaborate banding patterns in their shells.

P10 Frasers

Frasers Banded Snail (Sphaerospira fraseri)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Caryodids: Caryodidae

Caryodids are endemic to eastern Australia and are generally large. They include our largest land snail, the Giant Panda Snail.

P4 Giant Panda

Giant Panda Snail (Hedleyella falconeri)

P4 Flat coiled

Bundaberg Flat-coiled Snail (Pedinogyra terrycarlessi)

Carnivorous Snails: Rhytididae

The carnivorous snails eat meat and their diet includes a range of invertebrates including other snails. The long neck is a feature of these snails.

P11d

Glossy Turban Carnivorous Snail (Terrycarlessia turbinate) dining on an Asian Tramp snail

P11b

Harriett’s Carnivorous Snail (Austrorhytida harriettae)

 

 

 

Recent Posts

Slug slime does the trick

From the Courier Mail 29 July, 2017. ‘Doctors may soon patch up cuts and wounds with a glue inspired by slug slime.’

Scientists have found that slug slime has the ability to stick to wet surfaces unlike most glues that require dry surfaces. Scientists have simulated the molecular structure of slug slime to create a glue that has in laboratory testing, successfully repaired a hole in a pig’s heart that was wet with blood.

Tred-triangle-slughe glue was flexible enough to cope with stretching and is biodegradable. This could be useful to replace staples or stitches which can cause scarring.

Red-triangle Slug (Triboniophorus graeffei)

  1. Book delayed Leave a reply
  2. The Snail Whisperer talks on Radio New Zealand Leave a reply
  3. The Snail Whisperer makes headlines Leave a reply
  4. Snails eat fungi 1 Reply
  5. Book 2 is printed Leave a reply
  6. Mt Glorious Snails Leave a reply
  7. The David Attenborough Snail Leave a reply
  8. Some beautiful helicarionids from eastern Australia Leave a reply
  9. Come to hear the Snail Whisperer Leave a reply