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Taxon profile

class

gastropods
Gastropoda Cuvier, 1795

kingdom Animalia - animals »  phylum Mollusca - mollusks »  superclassis Cyrtosoma

Other names

= slugs
= snails

Images

Lymnaea stagnalis - Swamp Lymnaea

Lymnaea stagnalis - Swamp Lymnaea

Author: Ondřej Zicha

Achatina fulica - African Land Snail

Achatina fulica - African Land Snail

Author: Jiří Novák

Functions restricted to taxon Gastropoda

Important groups

Fissurellidae - Keyhole Limpets, Chilodontidae, Melanopsinae, Epitoniidae - Wentletraps, Marginellidae - Margin Shells, Buccinidae - Whelks, Muricidae - Muricids, Conidae, Hipponicidae - Bonnet-limpets, Cypraeidae - Cowries, Pulmonata - pulmonates
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Description

THE Gastropods are specially characterized, firstly, by their asymmetrical organization ; secondly, by their well-developed head ; and, thirdly, by their shell, which is formed of one piece, and coiled in a spiral, at least in the larval stage. The asymmetry of some of the principal organs of the body is the chief characteristic of the Gastropoda. The essential feature of this asymmetry is that the anus generally lies to one side of the median plane ; that the ctenidium (gill-combs), the osphradium (olfactory organs), the hypobranchial gland (or pallial mucous gland), and the auricle of the heart are single, or at least are more developed on one side of the body than the other ; and that there is only one genital orifice, which lies on the same side of the body as the anus.
The diet of Gastropoda varies according to the group under consideration. Generally speaking, the carnivorous habit is due to specialisation ; various forms live and feed on colonial invertebrates, such as Hydrozoa. Some Gastropoda are parasitic, generally in or upon Echinoderms.
Suter, H. 1913. Manual of the New Zealand Mollusca.
Author: Jan Delsing

Recently completed profiles

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Euspira macilenta (R. A. Philippi, 1844)
Neverita josephinia Risso, 1826
Capulus ungaricus (Linnaeus, 1758)
Aporrhais pespelecani (C. Linnaeus, 1758)
Truncatella subcylindrica (Linnaeus, 1767)

Included taxa

Number of records: 27

subclass Patellogastropoda Lindberg, 1986 - Limpets
subclass Vetigastropoda Salvini-Plawen, 1980
subclass Cocculiniformia Haszprunar, 1987
subclass Neritimorpha
subclass Caenogastropoda Cox, 1960
subclass Gastropoda incertae sedis Bouchet
subclass Heterobranchia J. E. Gray, 1840
subclass Neomphalina Bouchet

Gastropoda incertae sedis

superfamily Euomphaloidea
superfamily Loxonematoidea Koken, 1889
superfamily Macluritoidea
superfamily Ophiletoidea
superfamily Straparollinoidea
superfamily Trochonematoidea
family Holopeidae Wenz, 1938
family Pseudophoridae Miller, 1889
family Raphistomatidae Koken, 1896

Links and literature

CZ Pfleger V. (1999): České názvy živočichů III. Měkkýši (Mollusca), Národní muzeum, (zoologické odd.), Praha, 108 pp. [as Gastropoda]
Data retrieved on: 11 November 2013

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Explanations

extinct taxon