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News and General Information
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October 2011 — New and updated data have been uploaded to E-fauna BC, the Electronic Atlas of the Wildlife of British Columbia. Records are now available for terrestrial gastropods.
Wanted: leaf litter samples from anywhere in Canada
While the minute land molluscs that dwell in leaf litter are a major component of the terrestrial mollusc fauna of Canada, they have historically been neglected in many parts of Canada. Their small size has usually meant that they have been overlooked by all but the most dedicated naturalists and malacologists. Many gaps in our knowledge of these animals is the direct result of insufficient collections from almost all regions of the country. I am looking for donations of leaf litter samples (each 1–2 L in volume), or drift samples containing terrestrial species from anywhere in Canada. More information here.
Need a mollusc identified?
Do you require identifications made of land snails or slugs? I can do these from specimens, or often from photographs. Please contact me for more information. I frequently help photographers, naturalists and others identify slugs and snails in their photos — just ask! Contact me here.
Two species of Zonitoides, Zonitoides nitidus (Müller, 1774) and Z. arboreus (Say, 1817) occur in Canada (and BC). Sometimes, material in collections are confused because shells are often difficult to identify with certainty. Zonitoides nitidus grows to a slightly larger size, has a somewhat higher spire, and lacks the exceedingly fine and very weak spiral striae of Zonitoides arboreus. However, a better way to distinguish species is by the body pigmentation. Zonitoides nitidus (as its name suggests) has an entirely blackish body; that of Z. arboreus is lighter along the sides of the foot. There is also a spot, not present in the other species, that is sometimes described as “dull orange” and can be seen through the shell a little ways back from the aperture, especially in retracted animals. Take a look a the snail in the upper left of this photograph and you might make out this orangish spot.