Kaliella dendrophila (Van Benthem Jutting, 1950)

Vermeulen, Jaap J., Liew, Thor-Seng & Schilthuizen, Menno, 2015, Additions to the knowledge of the land snails of Sabah (Malaysia, Borneo), including 48 new species, ZooKeys 531, pp. 1-139: 69

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scientific name

Kaliella dendrophila (Van Benthem Jutting, 1950)


Taxon classification Animalia Stylommatophora Euconulidae

Kaliella dendrophila (Van Benthem Jutting, 1950)  Figure 58, 63

Liardetia dendrophila  Van Benthem Jutting, 1950: 407; Clements et al. 2008: 2762; Schilthuizen et al. 2013: online supplementary data. Type from Indonesia, Java.

Examined material from Sabah.

Interior Province. Crocker Range N.P., Gua Laing c. 12 km North of Keningau (leg. J.J. Vermeulen, V 1126). Sandakan Province. Kinabatangan valley, Batu Pangi (leg. J.J. Vermeulen & M. Schilthuizen, V 9647); Batu Tomanggong Besar (leg. M. Schilthuizen, BOR/MOL 2357; leg. A. van Til, BOR/MOL 3834).


Shell very small, thin, translucent, very pale greenish to yellowish, somewhat depressed-conical with flat sides; apex rounded. Surface shiny. Whorls: Top whorls convex, outer whorls (almost) flat, last whorl sharply angular at the periphery, almost flat or slightly convex above and below. Protoconch whorls convex, with distinct, moderately spaced, rounded spiral threads, radial sculpture absent or inconspicuous, subordinate. Teleoconch: A slight, obtuse keel present around the periphery; above and below with rather distinct, well-spaced (particularly half-way between suture and periphery, as well as just below the periphery) spiral threads, which consist of rows of densely placed beads which are often elongated in the direction of the growth lines. Radial sculpture: above the periphery with some rather distinct, irregularly spaced, somewhat raised growth lines, next to these locally some very fine, inconspicuous, moderately spaced, low and thin riblets; below the periphery with a few inconspicuous, irregularly spaced growth lines only. Umbilicus open, very narrow, or closed. Dimensions: Height up to 2.7 mm; width up to 4.1 mm; diameters of the first four whorls 0.55-0.67 mm, 1.1-1. 5 mm, 2.1-2.7 mm, c. 3.6 mm respectively; number of whorls up to 4 1/2; height aperture up to 1.6 mm; width aperture up to 2 mm.

Habitat in Sabah and distribution.

Primary and secondary forest on limestone soil. Alt. 0-500 m. Sabah: Crocker Range; Kinabatangan River valley.

River valley. Distribution elsewhere: Peninsular Malaysia; Java; Sulawesi; Ambon.

Cross diagnosis.

Easily recognizable within group 1 by the spiral sculpture on the teleoconch, above the periphery. Kaliella punctata  , of group 2, has a similar spiral sculpture, but consisting of pits. It also has a higher conical shell with whorls that increase much less rapidly in width. Kaliella gregaria  and Kaliella microsoma  have a similar shell but a spiral sculpture not consisting of rows of beads.


Van Benthem Jutting (1950: 407) describes the spiral striation as engraved into the shell surface. SEM images show that it consists of interrupted spiral threads.