Shell colour pattern in two fossil helicid snails, Tropidomphalus incrassatus (KLEIN, 1853) and Cepaea sylvestrina gottschicki WENZ, 1919, from the Middle Miocene of Poland MARCIN GÓRKA Institute

Marcin Górka

Abstract


Two fossil helicid snails, Tropidomphalus incrassatus (KLEIN, 1853) and Cepaea sylvestrina gottschicki WENZ, 1919, from the “detrital Sarmatian” (Middle Miocene) of the northernmost part of the Fore-Carpathian Depression were macroscopically analysed in daylight and UV-light to reveal the original shell colour pattern. The analysis shows a high degree of polymorphism in C. sylvestrina gottschicki, similar to that in the extant species Cepaea nemoralis (LINNAEUS, 1758) and Cepaea hortensis (O.F. MÜLLER, 1774), and results in the recognition of eight different banding patterns, at least four of which have never been presented before. The banding type in T. incrassatus shows strong convergence with that in the extant representatives of the Campylaeinae. It is suggested that restoration of the original shell colour pattern may serve as a useful tool in palaeoecological reconstructions.


Keywords


Shell pattern, UV-light, Helicidae, Tropidomphalus, Cepaea, Miocene,

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