“It was a cool morning and the colourful shell of the snail caught my eyes immediately.“ - Observation of the Week, 9/30/18

Our Observation of the Week is this Amphidromus hamatus snail, seen in Malaysia by @pizzamurderer!

“I am just a casual observer from Singapore and I got into loving nature as a young kid,” says E.H., who goes by pizzamurderer on iNat (“I love bugs and pizza.” is what their profile says). E.H. previously interned in a marine lab and enjoyed that work, but says “I'm actually interested in plants and insects more so than any other taxa, but taxonomy is tough and ever-changing.”

While on a family holiday at Gunung Mulu National Park, E.H. says “I was out photographing the plethora of organisms that I had never seen before. It was a cool morning and the colourful shell of the snail caught my eyes immediately. Intrigued, I snapped a few photos and that was that.”

I reached out to @jkfoon, a malacologist who specializes in Southeast Asian mollusks, to inquire further about this find, and he told me this genus is arboreal and individuals are often found high up in trees. He also notes

perhaps the most peculiar thing with Amphidromus is that many of them are chirally dimorphic i.e. there are both right-coiling (dextral) and left-coiling (sinistral) shells within a species. This sort of developmental character is highly unusual among animals and thus, have attracted the attention of scientists.

E.H. says he uses iNaturalist and other platforms “to inquire about IDs of plants and animals that I come across while on my nature walks. Taxonomy confuses me, so having the opinions of other, more experienced nature-lovers is pretty handy.” And JK Foon emphasizes the importance of making this connection between naturalists, saying

Southeast Asia is home to multiple biodiversity hotspots. Habitat loss is accelerating across the region yet many of its native biodiversity remains to be discovered by scientists. Given that tourism is booming across the region, online citizen science contributions such as this are invaluable in helping people appreciate, discover and document species and their distributions.

- by Tony Iwane.

- There are just over sixty observations of Amphidromus snails on iNaturalist, you can see them here.

- JK Foon helped to identify an observation on iNaturalist as the rediscovery of a snail on Hon Cau island in Vietnam.

הועלה ב-ספטמבר 30, 2018 06:47 אחה"צ על ידי tiwane tiwane


That is a very cool looking snail! I also enjoyed all the Amphidromus snails you posted from iNat'..

פורסם על-ידי walkingstick2 לפני יותר מ 5 שנים

Amphidromus is truly an amazing genus for several reasons including for sure the freakish chirality. The shell of this individual is not only gorgeous in coloring, but left-handed in shell coiling.


פורסם על-ידי susanhewitt לפני יותר מ 5 שנים

This is really cool looking. Snails are always neat. I wish we had snails like that in Canada.

פורסם על-ידי mws לפני יותר מ 5 שנים

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