Virginia Land Snails

Photo(s): Pallifera hemphilli by John Slapcinsky ©.

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Pallifera hemphilli (W.G. Binney, 1885)

Family: Philomycidae
Common name: Black Mantleslug

Length: 25-30 mm

Pallifera hemphilli is an average-sized Pallifera that like other philomycids has a mantle that covers the entire dorsal surface of the animal. The mantle is uniform slate grey-black on its dorsal surface and there are no flecks or spots. The color fades to dark grey along the lateral margins of the foot.The reproductive system is not equipped with a dart sac. The center of the jaw has 4 ribs, while the edges are smooth.

This species appears to be restricted to elevations above 1500 meters in several isolated spruce-fir forests. If these populations represent a single species or several similar species as is the case with other spruce-fir restricted snails has not been studied and Pallifera hemphilli like its congeners needs taxonomic work.

Pallifera hemphilli is restricted to the southern Appalachian Mountains from southwestern Virginia south along the mountains bordering North Carolina and Tennessee. A single Michigan record (Pilsbry, 1940) was not verified by Hubricht (1985) and appears to be a misidentification. In Virginia the species is restricted to the Mount Rogers area.

NatureServe Global Rank: G4
NatureServe State Rank: S1
Virginia’s wildlife action plan: Tier II


John Slapcinsky 10/2012

Range Map