Neohelix - Whitelip Snails (Family Polygyridae) 

Three species of Neohelix, the Whitelip Snails, have records in Indiana. Neohelix albolabris is the most common. It is a large woodland snail lacking teeth with a closed umbilicus and a subglobose shell.

Neohelix albolabris joins a "select" group of larger globose snails lacking teeth that includes species list in the F2 section of Group F: Mesodon mitchellianus (Sealed Globelet Snail), Mesodon normalis (Grand Globe Snail), and Patera pennsylvanica (Proud Globelet Snail).

Neither of the other two species (Neohelix alleni, the Western Whitelip and  N. dentifera, the Big-toothed Whitelip Snail) are listed for Indiana in Nature Serve, but do have a single museum record each. N. alleni has one record from Jefferson County in southeast Indiana and N. dentifera from Marion County in central Indiana

The single specimen of N. dentifera has a modern re-identification, so it is considered as possible. N. dentifera is noted in extreme southeast Kentucky (Dourson 2013) and Ohio (NatureServe). N. alleni was originally considered a subspecies of N. albolabris. Baker (1939) noted both in Illinois, as does Nature Serve. 

Neohelix albolabris (Say, 1817)

Neohelix albolabris (Say, 1817) 

Neohelix albolabris (Say, 1817)
Common Name: (Eastern) Whitelip Snail

Characters:  Heliciform, reflected lip, subglobose, imperforate; size ~ 17-45 mm diameter; one of the largest eastern snails.

Comparison: This species might be confused with Mesodon zaletus, another large Polygyrid snail, but it has a tooth (which may be lost in some shells). This species is distinguished from the Big-tooth White Lip which has, as you might imagine, a large parietal tooth and is thinner.

Habitat: mixed hardwood forests, base of limestone cliffs (Dourson 2015); in leaf litter or among rocks or logs in forests; preference for damp habitats, often on lower forest slopes with coarse woody debris (Hubricht 1985)

Status: distributed widely in the state in suitable habitat.

Neohelix dentifera (A. Binney, 1837)
Common name: Big-tooth Whitelip Snail

Characters:  Heliciform, reflected lip, subglobose to slightly depressed, imperforate; size ~ 11-17 mm diameter.

Comparison: Based on the range maps on Nature Serve, this species is out of its range here, but it has been collected in Ohio and Kentucky. This species might be confused with Mesodon zaletus, that also has a large parietal tooth. M. zaletus is more globose and, according to Dourson (2015), has a smaller parietal tooth. This species is distinguished from the other White Lips by the parietal tooth.

Habitat: in and around leaf litter in hardwood forests, may be associated with rocks and logs on acidic soils (Dourson 2015)

Status: There is one museum record of this species (Marion County), so the status is not known. The map here shows a third species (Neohelix alleni, the Western Whitelip) found in one county. This is more likely a mis-indentification of Neohelix albolabris.