Contributions to Zoology, 86 (1) – 2017Isabel T Hyman; Irantzu de la Iglesia Lamborena; Frank Köhler: Molecular phylogenetics and systematic revision of the south-eastern Australian Helicarionidae (Gastropoda, Stylommatophora)

To refer to this article use this url:

Mysticarion porrectus (Iredale, 1941)

Figs 14D, 16C-D, 20

Helicarion porrectus Iredale, 1941: 6; Smith, 1992: 234.

Mysticarion porrectus: Hyman and Ponder, 2010: 36-37, Figs 5B, 6C, 7F, 8F, 9F, 12C, 13C, 15D-F, 16A; Stanisic et al., 2010: 308-309, 329.


Material examined. Probable holotype. AM C.101136 (NW of Sydney, Blue Mountains, Mt. Irvine, NSW, 33°29’ S, 150°28’ E, leg. Ward, pre-1941; Fig. 14D).

Non-type material. See Table S1.


Diagnosis. Shell. Small to medium-sized, thin, glossy, pale golden to golden amber, globose with a flat spire. Protoconch with notched spiral grooves, teleoconch with fine, almost indistinct spiral grooves (Fig. 14D).

Animal. Body pale cream with no markings. Caudal horn moderately large. Sole slightly paler than body. Mantle lobes moderately small; shell lappets moderately small, wide at base, rapidly tapering, joined by a narrow mantle collar (Table 3; Fig. 16C-D).

Genitalia. Penis of moderate length, proximally swollen, penis and part of epiphallus enclosed in penial tunica. Penis interior with two main longitudinal pilasters, one proximally swollen, and multiple smaller longitudinal pilasters breaking up into pilasters at proximal end. Epiphallus very short, approx. equal to penis length, containing internal cryptae near flagellum; entering penis through very short verge. Epiphallic flagellum with internal cryptae and slender tail. Spermatophore not observed (Fig. 20).


Fig. 20. Reproductive anatomy of Mysticarion porrectus, AM C.462828. A. Genitalia. B. Penial interior. Abbreviations: alb, albumen gland; bc, bursa copulatrix; cg, capsule gland; ep, epiphallus; fl, flagellum; her, hermaphroditic duct; ov, ovotestis; p, penis; pp, penial pilasters; pr, prostate; prm, penial retractor muscle; pt, penial tunica; pv, penial verge; ut, uterus; vd, vas deferens. Scale bars: A= 2mm, B = 1 mm.

Remarks. Hyman and Ponder (2010) revised this species and concluded that it had a very wide range containing several disjunct populations that were all identical anatomically (Fig. 18). Our DNA study confirms that populations from Robertson, the Royal NP, the Blue Mountains, Barrington Tops, Dorrigo and the Gibraltar Range are genetically not very distinct and since they are also indistinguishable anatomically, should be treated as a single species. Material from Narooma in southeastern NSW was unable to be conclusively allocated to this species since the single specimen available was immature and proved unsuitable for DNA extraction. Even if this population is excluded, the range of this species still bridges a linear distance of over 500 km. Mysticarion porrectus is generally found at higher altitudes than M. obscurior and M. insuetus, both of which are found throughout parts of its range, and occupies rainforest or wet sclerophyll forest.

Mysticarion porrectus is larger and less globose than its congeners, with a lower whorl count. It also has the shortest epiphallus of any Mysticarion species. Other distinctive features of the reproductive system include a proximally swollen penis with two main longitudinal pilasters and a very short penial verge, and very little folding present in the ovotestis.