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Austropyrgus gippslandicus (Ponder, Colgan, Clark, Miller & Terzis, 1994)

Diagnostic features

This species belongs to the Austropyrgus sparsus group, whose members are characterised by the following shell features: small to medium sized shells, conical, with convex to slightly convex whorls. Furthermore, in females, the coiled oviduct is of an inverted U-shape or with two or more bends, loops or twists.

Austropyrgus gippslandicus differs from other members of the group in the following combination of characters: shell small, with convex whorls; prostate gland about 1/2–2/3 in pallial roof; pallial vas deferens raised above surface, with overlying loops/coils at prostate gland; coiled oviduct and bursal join just behind pallial wall.

This species is not found in sympatry with any other species of Austropyrgus.

Classification

Austropyrgus gippslandicus (Ponder, Colgan, Clark, Miller & Terzis, 1994)

Class Gastropoda

Subclass Caenogastropoda

Order Littorinimorpha

Superfamily Truncatelloidea

Family Tateidae

Genus Austropyrgus Cotton, 1942

Original nameFluvidona gippslandica Ponder, Colgan, Clark, Miller & Terzis, 1994. Ponder, W.F., Colgan, D. J., Clark, G. A., Miller, A. C. & Terzis, T.  (1994). Microgeographic, genetic and morphological differentiation of freshwater snails—the Hydrobiidae of Wilsons Promontory, Victoria, south-eastern Australia. Australian Journal of Zoology 42: 557–678.

Type locality: Franklin River at South Gippsland Hwy, E of Foster, Victoria.

Biology and ecology

In streams and springs on water weeds, hard substrate (rocks etc.) and crawling on litter and sediment. Can be locally abundant. Assumed to feed by scraping bacteria and microalgae. Lay solitary capsules containing a single egg. Direct development.

Additional information on the biology and ecology of members of this family can be found in Fauna of Australia, vol. 5B, p. 752-755.

Distribution

This species is currently only known from a few small tributaries of the Franklin River, north of Wilsons Promontory, eastern Victoria.

Notes

Most members of Austropyrgus, including this species, are geographically isolated and have restricted ranges.

Further reading

Clark, S. A., Miller, A. C. & Ponder, W. F. (2003). Revision of the snail genus Austropyrgus (Gastropoda: Hydrobiidae): a morphostatic radiation of freshwater gastropods in southeastern Australia. Records of the Australian Museum 28: 1–109.

Ponder, W. F., Colgan, D. J., Clark, G. A., Miller, A. C. & Terzis, T. (1994). Microgeographic, genetic and morphological differentiation of freshwater snails - the Hydrobiidae of Wilson's Promontory, Victoria, south-eastern Australia. Australian Journal of Zoology 42: 557-678.