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Barleeia rubra - Adams.jpg
shell of Barleeia rubra
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Mollusca
Class: Gastropoda
(unranked): clade Caenogastropoda

clade Hypsogastropoda
clade Littorinimorpha

Superfamily: Rissooidea
Family: Barleeiidae
Gray, 1857

See text.



Barleeiidae (often also spelled Barleeidae) is a family of minute sea snails, micromollusks in the clade Littorinimorpha. [1]

These snails are very abundant and live in sublittoral and intertidal waters on rocky substrates.

The shells are conical to high-spired. Their inner shell layer is chitinous. They are further characterized by a foot with sometimes a posterior mucous gland. Their olfactory organ, the osphradium is enlarged. In some species there are oesophageal pouches present. Their penis is sometimes provided with prostatic tissue. Their oviduct glands show a simple histology.[2]

Few malacologists are currently working on micromollusks. Since they are so small (only a few millimeters in size), they are difficult to study and classify. Therefore, these small mollusks are less well known than the larger ones.


Genera in the family Baleeiidae include:

Genera brought into synonymy
  • Amphitalamus David, 1934 accepted as Amphithalamus Carpenter, 1864


  1. ^ Gofas S. (1995). A remarkable species richness of the Barleeidae (Gastropoda: Rissoacea) in the Eastern Atlantic. The Nautilus 109(1): 14-37
  2. ^ Ponder W. F. (1983). "Review of the genera of the Barleeidae (Mollusca: Gastropoda: Rissoacea)". Records of the Australian Museum 35: 231-281.
  3. ^ WoRMS (2009). Ketosia. Accessed through the World Register of Marine Species at on 2010-09-16

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