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Temporal range: Cenomanian–Recent[1]
Alviniconcha hessleri.jpg
Two preserved individuals of Alviniconcha hessleri
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Mollusca
Class: Gastropoda
(unranked): clade Caenogastropoda
Superfamily: Abyssochrysoidea
Family: Provannidae
Warén & Ponder, 1991 [2]
Type genus
Provanna Dall, 1918

Pseudonininae Bertolaso & Palazzi, 1994

Provannidae is a family of deep water sea snails, marine gastropod mollusks in the superfmaily Abyssochrysoidea (according to the taxonomy of the Gastropoda by Bouchet & Rocroi, 2005 and updated in 2008 by Kaim et al.).

The genera Provanna and Desbruyeresia have smaller and slender shells, while the shells of Alviniconcha and Ifremeria are larger and swollen. The shells of these two last genera house a hypertrophied ctenidium large quantities of symbiotic bacteria.


These snails are part of the fauna of the deep-sea hydrothermal vents, cold seeps, whale falls, and sunken driftwood environments.[3]


The family Provaniidae was previously placed in the "Zygopleuroid group" (according to the taxonomy of the Gastropoda by Bouchet & Rocroi, 2005). This family has no subfamilies according to the taxonomy of the Gastropoda by Bouchet & Rocroi, 2005.

Subsequently, Provaniidae was placed in the superfamily Abyssochrysoidea Tomlin, 1927.[1]

There are some affinities with the Littorinoidea as shown by molecular data [4] and sperm ultrastructure [5]

Multi-gene analysis has shown that the family Provannidae is paraphyletic. It is being treated as belonging to the superfamily Abyssochrysoidea until a new family-level revision has been undertaken.[6]


Genera within the family Provannidae include:

Genera brought into synonymy
  • Olgaconcha L. Beck, 1991: synonym of Ifremeria Bouchet & Warén, 1991


  1. ^ a b Kaim A., Jenkins R. G. & Warén A. (2008). "Provannid and provannid−like gastropods from Late Cretaceous cold seeps of Hokkaido (Japan) and the fossil record of the Provannidae (Gastropoda: Abyssochrysoidea)". Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society 154(3): 421-436. doi:10.1111/j.1096-3642.2008.00431.x.
  2. ^ Warén & Ponder (1991), Zoologica Scripta, 20(1): 50
  3. ^ a b Suzuki Y. et al. (2006). "Single host and symbiont lineages of hydrothermal-vent gastropods Ifremeria nautilei (Provannidae): biogeography and evolution". Marine ecology. Progress series. 315: 167-175. abstract.
  4. ^ Colgan D. J., Ponder W. F., Beacham E. & Macaranas J. (2006). "Molecular phylogenetics of Caenogastropoda (Gastropoda: Mollusca)". Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 42(3): 717-737. doi:10.1016/j.ympev.2006.10.009 PDF
  5. ^ Healy, J. M. 1990. Taxonomic affinities of the deep-sea genus Provanna: new evidence from sperm structure; J. Molluscan Stud. 56: 119-122
  6. ^ a b S. B. JOHNSON, A. WARÉN, R. W. LEE, Y. KANO, A. KAIM, A. DAVIS, E. E. STRONG and R. C. VRIJENHOEK, Rubyspira, new genus and two new species of bone-eating deep-sea snails with ancient habits; Biological Bulletin, Vol. 219, No. 2 (October 2010), pp. 166-177
  7. ^ Warén A. & Bouchet P. (2009). "New gastropods from deep-sea hydrocarbon seeps off West Africa". Deep-Sea Research Part II: Topical Studies in Oceanography 56(23): 2326-2349. doi:10.1016/j.dsr2.2009.04.013
  • Warén, A., and W.F. Ponder. 1991, New species, anatomy, and systematic position of the hydrothermal vent and hydrocarbon seep gastropod family Provannidae fam. n. (Caenogastropoda). Zool Scr. 20: 27-56.