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Sermyla venustula (Brot, 1877)

Diagnostic features

The shells of Sermyla venustula are taller and more slender, with a higher spire, and have less distinct axial and spiral ribs in comparison with S. cf. riqueti.


Sermyla venustula (Brot, 1877)

Class Gastropoda

Subclass Caenogastropoda

Order Cerithiomorpha

Superfamily Cerithioidea

Family Thiaridae

Genus Sermyla H & A. Adams, 1854

Original name: Melania venustula Brot, 1877. Brot, A. 1877. Die Melaniaceen (Melanidae) in Abbildungen nach der Natur. Systematisches Conchylien-Cabinet 1(24): 273-352, plts 31-36.

Type locality: “Port Denison, Nov. Holl. [Novae Hollandia]” (=Bowen, Queensland) probably in error as this species is not known to occur in that part of Australia (Glaubrecht et al. 2009).

Synonyms: Melania carbonata Reeve, 1859; Sermylasma prognata Iredale, 1943.

Biology and ecology

On and in sediment, rocks and water weeds in estuarine and freshwater rivers, streams, ponds and billabongs. A detritus feeder. Broods larvae in a brood pouch in the head which contains about a dozen juveniles.


Gulf of Carpentaria drainages of the Northern Territory and Howard Springs near Darwin; northern Queensland, and a few locations in central Australia and in NW Australia.

Further reading

Glaubrecht, M., Brinkmann, N. & Pöppe, J. (2009). Diversity and disparity ‘down under’: systematics, biogeography and reproductive modes of the ‘marsupial’ freshwater Thiaridae (Caenogastropoda, Cerithioidea) in Australia. Zoosystematics and Evolution 85: 199-275.

Iredale, T. (1943). A basic list of the fresh water Mollusca of Australia. Australian Zoologist 10: 188-230.

Maaß, N. and Glaubrecht, M. (2012). Comparing the reproductive biology of three “marsupial”, eu-viviparous gastropods (Cerithioidea, Thiaridae) from drainages of Australia’s monsoonal north. Zoosystematics and Evolution 88: 293–315. 

Smith, B. J. (1992). Non-marine Mollusca. Pp. i-xii, 1-408 in W. W. K. Houston. Zoological Catalogue of Australia, 8. Canberra, Australian Government Publishing Service.