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A sinistral specimen of the terrestrial slug Arion lusitanicus (Gastropoda: Pulmonata: Arionidae)



A sinistral specimen of the terrestrial slug Arion lusitanicus (Gastropoda: Pulmonata: Arionidae)



Malakologische Abhandlungen (Dresden) 20(2): 247-252



A juvenile sinistral specimen of Arion lusitanicus was found near Muenster (Germany, Nordrhein-Westfalen) and raised in isolation. Its entire external and internal morphology is a mirror image of normal dextral slugs. In mating experiments with dextral individuals the partners showed clear courtship behaviour but were never successful. This was probably caused by the opposite position of their genital pores, which might make copulation impossible for mirror-image slugs. Reports of sinistral terrestrial slugs are very rare. The authors review earlier cases, and discuss the possible genetic basis of sinistrality in slugs.

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