Photo of the day (23): Bellamya unicolor

Bellamya unilor is a species freshwater snail in the family Viviparidae fom Africa.

Bellamya unicolorI am happy, that the reader of my blog identified my snail properly. Thank you.

Apertural view of the shell. The width of the shell is 25 mm, the height of the shell is 35 mm.

Bellamya unicolorOblique view of a spire:

Bellamya unicolor shellOblique umbilical view of a shell:
Bellamya unicolorApical view focused on the apex shows, that this shell has 6 and 1/8 whorls:
Bellamya unicolorLateral view:
Bellamya unicolorA snail is protruding from its shell:
Bellamya unicolorLeft side view. The shell of this specimen is damaged and I do not know what caused this damage, but I can easily recognize snails from each other.
Bellamya unicolorBellamya unicolor snail defecating:
Bellamya unicolorFrontal view of a snail shows tentacles, snout and some folds of the mantle above the head:
Bellamya unicolor
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Photo of the day (22): Clea helena

Clea helena is a species of a freshwater snail from the family Buccinidae. Buccinidae is a marine family with over 500 species. But the genus Clea is the only genus of Buccinidae, that invaded freshwater habitats. There are 8-10 freshwater species in the genus Clea.

Clea helena has typical characteristics of Buccinidae:

* It is a scavenger or predator.

* It have a siphon in the siphonal notch. (Longer structure for the siphon is called siphonal canal, but the Clea helena has just a siphonal notch.)

* It have also an operculum, of course.

Clea helena lives on the sandy bottom or in the muddy and sandy bottom in lower reaches of rivers in Southeast Asia. The long inhalating siphon is usually stretched forward or upward. It serves very well for breathing in the mud and it probably helps to locate the decaying animals or a live prey according its smell. Its live prey are other species of snails. Clea helena snails are often burried or partially burried in the substrate. The shell is at least partly covered by the muddy sediment, that could be a good camouflage.

Clea_helena

This width of this empty shell is 7.5 mm and the height is 15 mm. I did not find an opeculum in the substrate because the opeculum is quite small and it have a silimar color as the sand in my aquarium.

Clea_helena_12_shell

Two oblique views of the shell show the siphonal notch:

Clea_helena_shell_14_siphonal_notchClea_helena_shell_13_siphonal_notch

The width of the shell of this live specimen is 7 mm and the height of the shell is 14 mm. The opeculum is covering an aperture.

Clea_helena_04_shell

The color of the shell is yellow and brown. The sculpture of the shell has ribs.

Clea_helena_03_shell

Abapaertural view of a shell and dorsal view of the snail:

Clea_helena_05

The foot and head region is patched in yellow and gray color. Fully extended snail:

Clea_helena_02

Ventral side of the foot have the same color as the rest of the body:

Clea_helena_11

Right side views:

Clea_helena_06
Clea_helena_07

Frontal view of the snail shows its tentacles, position of its eyes and siphon. Umbilical view of a shell.

Clea_helena_08

Left side view:

Clea_helena_09
Clea_helena_10

Clea helena have separate sexes (some snals are males and some are females), but I have no idea, what is the gender of the specimen on these my photos. I have not seen them mating yet.

References

Strong E. E., Gargominy O., Ponder W. F. & Bouchet P. (2008). “Global Diversity of Gastropods (Gastropoda; Mollusca) in Freshwater”. Hydrobiologia 595: 149-166. hdl:10088/7390 doi:10.1007/s10750-007-9012-6.