Virginia Land Snails

Photo(s): Gastrocopta clappi shell by Jeff Nekola ©.

Click photo(s) to enlarge.

Gastrocopta clappi (Sterki, 1909)

Family: Vertiginidae

Height: ~3.7 mm
Width: ~1.9 mm
Whorls: 6-7

This species and Gastrocopta armifera are easily distinguished by their tall, white-clear shells that are at least 3.5 mm tall. Gastrocopta clappi can be separated from the very similar G. armifera by its sheet or plate-shaped columellar lamella, which is more deeply inserted into the shell on its bottom side (Hubricht, 1972).

Gastrocopta clappi is restricted to dry (xeric) limestone glades and grasslands, where it occurs around the base of grass clumps and under sparse vegetation and rock slabs.

Synonyms for this animal’s name include Gastrocopta armifera clappi.

This animal has one of the most limited ranges for any North American pupillid land snail, being known only from west of the Blue Ridge from western Virginia and Alabama, to central Kentucky and the Nashville Basin in Tennessee (Nekola & Coles, 2010). In Virginia this species is limited to cedar glade habitats in the far western counties.

NatureServe Global Rank: G4G5
NatureServe State Rank: S1S2
Virginia’s wildlife action plan: Tier III


Jeff Nekola 9/2012

Range Map