Trochulus hispidus

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Trochulus hispidus
Trochulus hispidus live.jpg
A live individual of Trochulus hispidus (an older adult with most of the hairs worn off of the shell)
Trochulus hispidus 01.JPG
Five views of a shell of Trochulus hispidus
Scientific classification
T. hispida
Binomial name
Trochulus hispidus
(Linnaeus, 1758)[2]

Trichia hispida
Trochulus sericeus (Draparnaud, 1801)[3]
Trichia sericea (Draparnaud, 1801)

Trochulus hispidus, previously known as Trichia hispida, common name, the "hairy snail", is a species of air-breathing land snail, a terrestrial pulmonate gastropod mollusk in the family Hygromiidae, the hairy snails and their allies.


This species occurs in a number of European countries and islands including:

Western Europe:

Northern Europe:

  • Denmark, Norway, Sweden, Finland[1]

Central Europe:

Southern Europe:

  • Andorra, Spain, Italy, Bulgaria[1]

Eastern Europe:

  • Moldova
  • Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania
  • Ukraine[5]
  • Russian Federation (Kaliningrad)[1]


The 3-6 x 5-11 mm shell has 5-6 moderately convex whorls which are rounded or very slightly keeled at the periphery. The aperture has a thin white lip inside. The umbilicus is open and usually wide at 1/8-1/4 of shell diameter. In colour the shell is brown to cream, sometimes with a light band at the periphery. The periostracum is irregularly striated, and densely covered with short (0.2-0.3 mm), curved hairs. These hairs usually remain in the umbilicus if worn away from the rest of the shell. Lost hairs leave pronounced scars.[6]

The animal is brownish grey with a darker anterior part.[6]

Scanning electron micrograph of the love dart of Trochulus hispidus, Upper image is lateral view - scale bar 500 μm (0.5 mm). Lower image is a cross-section near the base - scale bar 50 μm.


This species of snail creates and uses love darts before mating. The love dart of this species is thorn-shaped.

Shepeleva (2014) studied eyes of Trochulus hispidus.[7]


The size of the egg is 1.5 mm.[8]

A hairy snail was found in the plumage of a great tit (Parus major) wintering in SW Poland in 2010. This passerine was the smallest bird species reported to carry a gastropod.[9]


  1. ^ a b c d e f Pall-Gergely B. (2013). "Trochulus hispidus". In: IUCN 2014. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2014.1. <>. Downloaded on 02 July 2014.
  2. ^ Linnaeus C. 1758. Systema naturae per regna tria naturæ, secundum classes, ordines, genera, species, cum characteribus, differentiis, synonymis, locis. Tomus I. Editio decima, reformata. pp. [1-4], 1-824. Holmiae. (Salvius).
  3. ^ Draparnaud J. P. R. 1801. Tableau des mollusques terrestres et fluviatiles de la France. pp. [1-2], 1-116. Montpellier, Paris. (Renaud; Bossange, Masson & Besson).
  4. ^ Proćków, Małgorzata; Kuźnik-Kowalska, Elżbieta; Mackiewicz, Paweł (2017-08-01). "Phenotypic plasticity can explain evolution of sympatric polymorphism in the hairy snail Trochulus hispidus (Linnaeus, 1758)". Current Zoology. 63 (4): 389–402. doi:10.1093/cz/zow082. ISSN 1674-5507. PMID 29491999.
  5. ^ Balashov I. & Gural-Sverlova N. 2012. An annotated checklist of the terrestrial molluscs of Ukraine. Journal of Conchology. 41 (1): 91-109.
  6. ^ a b "Species summary for Trochulus hispidus". AnimalBase, last modified 4 January 2014, accessed 28 June 2014.
  7. ^ (in Russian) Shepeleva I. P. (2014). "Сравнительный анализ камерных глаз брюхоногих легочных моллюсков Trochulus hispidus (Linnaeus, 1758) из Южной Швеции и Калининградской области (Stylommatophora, Hygromiidae). A comparative analysis of the camera eyes of gastropod pulmonate mollusk Trochulus hispidus (Linnaeus, 1758) from the South Sweden and Kaliningrad Region (Stylommatophora, Hygromiidae)". Ruthenica 24(2): 123-127 PDF.
  8. ^ Heller J.: Life History Strategies. in Barker G. M. (ed.): The biology of terrestrial molluscs. CABI Publishing, Oxon, UK, 2001, ISBN 0-85199-318-4. 1-146, cited page: 428.
  9. ^ Rusiecki S. & Rusiecka A. 2013. Hairy snail Trochulus hispidus (Linnaeus, 1758) in flight - a note on avian dispersal of snails. Folia Malacologica 21(2):111-112.

Further reading[edit]

  • Dépraz A., Hausser J. & Pfenninger M. (2009). "A species delimitation approach in the Trochulus sericeus/hispidus complex reveals two cryptic species within a sharp contact zone". BMC Evolutionary Biology 2009(9): 171. doi:10.1186/1471-2148-9-171
  • Kruckenhauser L., Duda M., Bartel D., Sattmann H., Harl J., Kirchner S. & Haring E. (2014). "Paraphyly and budding speciation in the hairy snail (Pulmonata, Hygromiidae)". Zoologica Scripta, 43(3): 273-288. doi:10.1111/zsc.12046.
  • Proćków M. & Kuźnik-Kowalska E. (2016). "Major fitness components in life history of euryoecious land snail Trochulus hispidus (Linnaeus, 1758)(Gastropoda: Hygromiidae)". Folia Malacologica 24: 179-184. doi:10.12657/folmal.024.015. PDF

External links[edit]