Snail identification workshop waterford july 2009
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Cepaea nemoralis. Snail Identification Workshop Waterford July 2009. Roy Anderson. What are snails?. Land snails belong to the Phylum Mollusca which includes snails, slugs, bivalves, squid and octopus

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Snail Identification Workshop Waterford July 2009

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Cepaea nemoralis

Snail Identification WorkshopWaterford July 2009

Roy Anderson


What are snails?

  • Land snails belong to the Phylum Mollusca which includes snails, slugs, bivalves, squid and octopus

  • Within the huge variety of molluscs there are a number of Classes: land snails belong to the Gastropoda or gastropods, literally mouth-foot animals because they crawl on a foot which contains the mouth


What are snails?

  • The gastropods in turn are made of animals with or without a thin, horny flap, the operculum, which closes off the shell aperture when the animal has retreated

  • Those with an operculum are the in Subclass Prosobranchia. Prosobranchsare mostly marine but we have 2 land snails, Acicula fusca and Pomatias elegans

Acicula fusca [point snail]- size 2.8mm


What are snails?

  • The remaining snails are in Subclass Pulmonata, the pulmonates

  • Pulmonates mostly have shells into which they retreat. Those that do not are slugs. We have two semi-slugs, Semilimax pyrenaicus and Vitrina pellucida, which cannot fully retreat into their shells

A semi-slug, Semilimax pyrenaicus


Snail structures


Shell structures


Teeth etc.


Counting whorls


Size & shape


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Merdigera obscura


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