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325 Glossary of Terms acute—an angle less than 90 degrees; a sharper or more pointed angle. antepenultimate—“before the penultimate”; the whorl before the penultimate whorl. apertural Teeth—protrusions into the aperture from the surrounding shell. Also called denticles or, collectively, dentition. aperture—the opening of a snail’s shell through which the body of the snail protrudes. aperture lip—the edge of the shell around the aperture, the configuration of which may be used in identification of a species. apical—at, of, or on the apex. The top or peak of the shell. armature—the apertural teeth or dentition. auriculate—ear-shaped, most often referring to the aperture. axis—the central line around which the whorls of a spiral shell revolve. The columella of some shells form the axis, or the umbilicus may form a cylinder or funnel around it. basal—the bottom of a snail shell when referring to the position of a structure, or characteristic (e.g., basal tooth, basal sculpturing, etc.). body whorl—the last whorl of a snail shell. bristles—hair-like projections formed by the periostracum on the surface of a shell (also called hairs). calcareous—composed of calcium carbonate as the substance forming a shell; a chalky texture. callus—a thickened area on a shell, such as a callus ridge within the apertural lip, a transparent thickening on the parietal surface, etc. capacious—of large capacity (i.e., in relation to the overall size of the shell). carina (pl carinae)—a keel or raised ridge-like projection such as around the periphery of some shells. caudal fossa (= caudal pit or mucous pit)—a pit or slit at the posterior end of a gastropod where the pedal furrows come together. It is usually filled with mucus and sometimes bits of debris. collabral—oriented at the same angle as the aperture. columella (columellar)—the central axis of a snail shell. Columellar—structures on or attached to the columella (e.g., columellar tooth). concave—indented or curved inward causing a depression. conic (conical)—cone-shaped; relatively straight-sided tapering toward a point. contractile tentacles—tentacles that are shortened or lengthened by contraction and extension . Compare with retractile tentacles. convex—inflated or curved outward, as a rounded or domed spire. crest—a wave-like ridge in the last whorl of the shell just behind the outer or palatal lip of the aperture. 326 Land Snails and Slugs of the pacific northwest cusp—a point on a structure forming a tooth-like protuberance. cuticular—pertaining to skin or skin-like in origin. Cuticular riblets or other sculpturing are formed from the periostracum. dentition—referring to apertural teeth. Denticle—an individual tooth-like structure. Denticulate—having tooth-like structures. dextral—whorled to the right—recognized by the aperture on the right side of the shell when viewed from the front with the apex upward. diameter (width)—Greatest or major diameter is measured from the outer edge of the aperture directly across the shell with the axis vertical and the shell turned to measure its maximum width. Lesser or minor diameter is measured with the axis vertical and the shell turned so that the outer edge of the last whorl just behind the aperture or peristome is parallel to the measuring lines of the scale. discoidal (disk-shaped)—shells with a flat or nearly flat spire. disjunct—being separated from similar occurrences. A disjunct population is well separated from other populations of the same species. distal—located away from the center (i.e., farthest from the central axis). elliptical—an oval shape with the ends similarly curved. elongate—of snail shells, those that are distinctly higher than wide. epiphragm—a membrane or seal formed from mucus secreted over the aperture of the shell to protect the snail from desiccation during hibernation or aestivation. flammules—irregular markings, usually reddish or orange, resembling flames. foot—the underside and lower body of a gastropod (stomach-foot). funnelform—narrowing inward from the opening like a funnel (i.e., an umbilicus that expands with the growth of the shell diameter). Compare with symmetrical. fusiform (spindle-shaped)—a relatively long narrow shell that tapers toward both ends. globose—spherical or ball-shaped. Globose shells are inflated to be somewhat spherical in shape. granules (granulose)—small grain-like bumps. Granulose—surface appearing as if covered with small seeds or scattered grains of sand. growth lines (growth-wrinkles)—waves or wrinkles in the shell surface resulting from various rates or periods of growth. hairs—fine bristles formed...


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