Virginia Land Snails

Photo(s): Shells of Catinella vagans from Pilsbry (1948), with permission from the Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University.

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Catinella vagans (Pilsbry, 1900)

Family: Succineidae
Common name: Mudbank Ambersnail

Width: 5.0-6.4 mm
Height: 7.6-10.8 mm
Whorls: 2-3

Catinella vagans has an elongate, inflated shell that is translucent amber and has a very large, ovate aperture. The aperture is most of the fragile shell’s length, and the shell’s first (nuclear) whorl is quite low. The snail’s body markings consist of dark speckles or bands on a cream-colored background (Pilsbry, 1948; Franzen, 1981).

This snail is found on damp soil or mud, sometimes among litter, at the edge of freshwater ponds (Franzen, 1981).

Taxonomy of succineid snails is problematic, with many described species and forms that are not easily distinguished. A variety of this species in North Carolina recognized by Pilsbry (1948) was later described as Catinella waccamawensis Franzen, 1981.

The distribution of Catinella vagans is very poorly known – previously it has been reported at Cape May, New Jersey, and widely in Kansas (Leonard, 1959). In Virginia, putative specimens of C. vagans have been collected only at Yorktown.

NatureServe Global Rank: G3
NatureServe State Rank: S1S3


Ken Hotopp 1/2013

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