Kansas Land Snails
Allogona profunda (Say, 1821) Broad-banded Forestsnail
Identification: about 1-inch in diameter, umbilicus wide, a thickening or tooth on basal loop of peristome (reflected aperture), according to Leonard (1959) the brownish color banding may or not be present in Kansas specimens. Habitat: a woodland snail found associated with woody and leafy debris; wooded floodplains and hillsides are suitable habitat, especially with flowing water in a stream or river channel.
Anguispira alternata (Say, 1816) Flamed Tigersnail
Identification: about ¾ inch, reddish-brown stripes on a yellowish background are noticeable, the umbilicus is wide and the lip (edge of the aperture) is simple and unreflected. Small specimens have sharper edge. Habitat: forest, either floodplain or upland, associated with logs, rotting and hollow trees, and rocks and outcrops. I've found them in large numbers after a rain crawling over boulders and rock ledges. They are also found in "weedy roadsides and along railroads" (Leonard 1959) and in residential areas in and around gardens and outbuildings. They may be found in the dirt or burrowed into the rotted underside of logs.
Carychium exile I. Lea, 1842 Ice Thorn
Cochlicopa – Pillar Snails
These two species of Pillar snails (Cochlicopa lubrica, the Glossy Pillar, and Cochlicopa lubricella, the Thin Pillar) in Kansas are easily distinguished from other land snails by their size (~ 5 mm), columnar/conical shell, and lack of apertural teeth.
Cochlicopa lubrica (Muller, 1774) Glossy Pillar
Cochlicopa lubricella (Porro, 1838) Thin Pillar
Daedalochila - Liptooth Snails
Two species are found in Kansas - Daedalochila dorfeuilliana (I. Lea, 1838), the Oakwood Liptooth and Daedalochila jacksoni (Bland, 1866), the Ozark Liptooth.
Identification: about 7-9 mm in diameter, disc-shaped, aperture thick and reflected, large squarish or rounded parietal tooth and two smaller teeth recessed from the outer lip of the aperture. Leonard (1959) notes that more than one-half of the next-to-last whorl is visible in the umbilical view for D. dorfeuilliana compared to D. jacksoni, where less than one-half is visible (see comparative image). Habitat: a forest species, likes rocky areas (including rock walls), can be found associated with large woody debris or leaf litter, limestone outcrops.
Daedalochila dorfeuilliana (I. Lea, 1838)
Daedalochila jacksoni (Bland, 1866) Ozark Liptooth
Deroceras laeve (Muller, 1774) Meadow Slug
Identification: the mantle is near the front of the animal and covers about 1/3 the total length of the animal; small (about 1 inch) when the body is extended; pale grayish tones (varies from more yellowish to darker grey, blueish-black). Habitat: in woodlands, meadows, or urban settings, usually under something: leaves, branches, discarded lumber, and so on.
Euchemotrema fraternum Upland Pillsnail
Euchemotrema leai (A. Binney, 1841) Lowland Pillsnail
Euchemotrema leai aliciae Alice's Pillsnail
Euconulus trochulus (Reinhardt, 1883) Silk Hive
Gastrocopta - Snaggletooth Snails
These snails are taller than wide with a reflected lip; one or more apertural teeth, and columnar to pupilliform. On first glance, they may be confused with Carychium, Gastrocopta, Pupillidae, and Vertigo. Use of the Indiana key should bring you close to the species.
Gastrocopta abbreviata (Sterki, 1909) Plains Snaggletooth
Identification: The shell height can vary from 3.3 mm and 4 mm. The columellar lamella is blunter than the sometimes similar C. armifera. The basal lamina can be more well-developed as well. Habitat: This species can be found in a variety of habitats associated with leaf litter or rocks including riparian woodlands (xeric or mesic) and grasslands. It can co-occur with Gastrocopta armifera.
Gastrocopta armifera (Say, 1821) Armed Snaggletooth
Identification: This species is the largest pupillid, > 4 mm in height. It has several apertural teeth. The columellar lamella is more triangular than G. abbreviata and the basal lamina can be less well-developed. See G. abbreviata species sheet for a comparison of these two species. Habitat: It is found in a variety of open habitats including roadsides, along railroads, cedar glades, and open woods – xeric or mesic. It can be associated with leaf litter or rocks. I collected about a dozen on top of a large piece of shale (see image below). It can co-occur and be confused with Gastrocopta abbreviata.
Gastrocopta contracta (Say, 1822) Bottleneck Snaggletooth
Identification: taller than wide; pupilliform; thin but wide reflected lip; aperture tends to triangular in shape; height about 2.5 mm; angulo-parietal lamella not split, rather appearing as a single large, folded structure filling the aperture; columellar tooth (lamella) roundish, large and laminate. Habitat: It can be found in a variety of open habitats including roadsides, along railroads, cedar glades as well mesic or xeric woods. It can co-occur with Gastrocopta armifera.
Haplotrema concavum (Say, 1821 Gray-foot Lancetooth
Identification: about 12 mm and 5 whorls, yellow to greenish-white color, sutures are deep, widely umbilicate showing all whorls to the apex, the outer and basal margins of the aperture are only slightly expanded. Habitat: woodlands, among leaf litter and woody debris. A carnivorous species.
Hawaiia minuscula (A. Binney, 1841) Minute Gem
Identification: A small snail about 2.5 mm wide with 4 whorls, a wide and shallow umbilicus ending in a thin-lipped aperture. The nuclear whorl is smooth but the rest of the surface is cross-hatched with fine, irregularly-spaced growth lines and minute spiral striae. The similarly sized Lucilla lacks the microsculpture. Habitat: woodlands, among leaf litter and woody debris; elsewhere at times.
Helicodiscus notius Hubricht, 1962 Tight Coil
Helicodiscus parallelus (Say, 1817) Compound Coil
Inflectarius inflectus (Say, 1821) Shagreen
Identification: about 12 mm, depressed shell, about 5 closely coiled whorls, surface with fine hairs, imperforate, a long curved parietal tooth, and two apertural teeth.
Linisa texasiana (Moricand, 1833) Texas Liptooth
Other than the mention in Hubricht (1985), there is no record of this species in Kansas. It has been collected in Oklahoma and Arkansas.
Lucilla singleyanus (Pilsbry, 1889) Smooth Coil
Mediappendix wandae (Webb, 1953) Slope Ambersnail
Mesodon - Globe Snails
There are two major groups of Globe Snails - those with a closed umbilicus (imperforate) and those with a partially open umbilicus (rimate). The latter are the only native (known-to-date) Mesodons in Kansas. There are only two: Mesodon clausus , the Yellow Globelet, and the more common Mesodon thyroidus, the White-lip Globe. iNaturalist observations of some of Mesodon and Neohelix may be incorrect if the only image is the top of the shell.
The Yellow Globelet has a globose shell, no parietal tooth, adults usually 15-18 mm, and may be confused with smaller toothless Mesodon thyroidus. Habitat: a woodland land snail, has been found recently in woodland areas associated with rotting branches and fallen timber.
The White-lip Globe has a subglobose shell, usually with a parietal tooth, adults usually 17-22 mm. Smaller shells without a parietal tooth may be confused with Mesodon clausus. Habitat: found in woodland habitats associated with decaying woody debris, small rock piles, walls, or ledges; also found in grasslands adjacent to woodlands and in some residential landscapes.
Mesodon clausus (Say, 1821) Yellow Globelet
Mesodon thyroidus (Say, 1816) White-lip Globe
Mesomphix friabilis Brittle Button
Neohelix - Whitelip Snails
There are two species in Kansas - Neohelix alleni, the Western Whitelip, and Neohelix divesta, the Ozark Whitelip. They differ from the Mesodon species by being imperforate (closed umbilicus), having a more subglobose to depressed shell, and lacking teeth. iNaturalist observations of some Neohelix and Mesodon may be incorrect if the only image is the top of the shell.
Neohelix alleni (Sampson, 1883) Western Whitelip
Neohelix divesta (Gould, 1848) Ozark Whitelip
Nesovitrea electrina (Gould, 1841) Amber Glass
Identification: 4-5 mm; depressed shell; glossy with clear radial lines; about 4 whorls, rapidly enlarging; umbilicus wide, apertural lip rounded. Look superficially like Zonitoides arboreus. The radial lines might confuse with Glyphyalina, but the umbilicus differs. Habitat: woodlands, among leaf litter and woody debris, seems to prefer moister environments.
Novisuccinea ovalis (Say, 1817) Oval Ambersnail
Paravitrea – Supercoil Snails
Philomycus carolinianus (Bosc, 1802) Carolina Mantleslug
Punctum minutissimum (I. Lea, 1841) Small Spot
Identification: 1-1.5 mm; radial striae; about 4 whorls; widely umbilicate; thin, unreflected lip. Habitat: woodlands, among leaf litter and woody debris, especially well-decaying.
Rabdotus dealbatus (Say, 1821) Whitewashed Rabdotus
Identification: the only snail this large with a high spire, shell smooth and white, some darker tan or brownish stripes or blotches (see image lower left). Habitat: varied from drier, open locations to woodlands and the tops of bluffs besides streams and rivers (Leonard 1959). The individual pictured above was collected in an oak-hickory and cedar woodland, but others in a meadow habitat. Both areas were limestone. Hubricht (1985) regarded this species as a calciphile that was found crawling on the ground or on low vegetation in wet weather.
Stenotrema - Slitmouth Snails
Striate snails - Striatura
Strobilops labyrinthicus (Say, 1817) Maze Pinecone
Identification: a uniquely appearing snail; minute snail at < 3 mm, dome-shaped, distinct radial ribs, reflected lip, two unequal parietal lamella extending into the body whorl. Habitat: woodlands, among leaf litter and woody debris, check crevices.
Succinea - a type of Amber Snail - Family Succiniedae
Triodopsis - Threetooth Snails
Their depressed shells, open umbilicus, and three apertural teeth help identify these species of woodland snails.
Identification: The Post Oak Threetooth has a “depressed globose” shell, a narrow umbilicus, white reflected lip, and its three teeth. Compared to the Ozark Threetooth, the parietal tooth is shorter and straight, the two apertural teeth more conical than stubby, and the shell is smaller in diameter. Habitat: Leonard (1959) reported this species as occurring in “upland habitats in sandy areas where oak forest is the dominant vegetation.”
Triodopsis cragini Call, 1886 Post Oak Threetooth
Triodopsis neglecta (Pilsbry, 1899) Ozark Threetooth
Ventridens ligera (Say, 1821) Globose Dome
Ventridens demissus (A. Binney, 1843) Perforate Dome
Webbhelix multilineata (Say, 1821) Striped Whitelip
Identification: This is a large snail, 20 to 25 mm diameter,depressed globose, imperforate, oval aperture oval to lunate, usually without lamellae, peristome narrowly reflected, olive-brown shell color, but with multiple reddish brown spiral bands (sometimes absent). Habitat: This is a snail of “marshy woodlands and meadows” according to Leonard (1959). According to Oesch et al. (in press), this snail can escape floodwaters by climbing up tree trunks or on other vegetation and summarizes an earlier work reporting this species might be predacious on other snails.
Bradybaena similaris (Férussac, 1822)
Asian Tramp Snail
likely common in residential areas, around foundations, basements, gardens