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Shell Architecture Up Close

July 2, 2009

In my opinion, molluscs are quite impressive looking things, and that is no less true of the smaller snails as it is octopi and giant clams. Vertigo pygmaea Draparnaud 1801 is a holarctic land snail often found in dry calcareous grassland and on dunes, but never in wooded areas. Inside the mouth of the shell are a number of folds known as ‘teeth’. which are very useful for identifying the species. V. pygmaea can have between four and seven of these teeth, but only one on the upper (‘parietal’) margin of the mouth.

Unfortunately I didn’t include a scale with this photo, but the background is my fingertip. V. pygmaea are seldom more than 2.3 mm high.

Shell of Vertigo pygmaea

Shell of Vertigo pygmaea

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5 Comments leave one →
  1. July 6, 2009 8:04 am

    Nice pic; I studied geology, so I have spent a lot of time with moluscs, but I can’t remember seeing any internal teeth before.

  2. July 6, 2009 9:19 am

    Thanks Geoff!

    I’m looking forward to the posthole piece!

    Matt

  3. July 6, 2009 9:34 am

    – so am I!
    I wish some one else could write it!
    BTW; You should do a series of posts like this, it is an interesting insight into paeleo-snails.

  4. July 6, 2009 9:58 am

    I know that feeling.

    I do have a few more snails to talk about, so that sounds like a very good idea.

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  1. Shell Architecture Up Close « Adventures in archaeology, human ... | Museum And Art

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