Nerita vaitapihana Curtiss, 1938,

Low, Martyn E. Y. & Tan, Siong Kiat, 2014, On the identities of the molluscan names described in A Short Zoology of Ta h i t i in the Society Islands by Anthony Curtiss in 1938 (Mollusca: Cephalopoda, Gastropoda), Zootaxa 3764 (3), pp. 394-400: 399

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Nerita vaitapihana Curtiss, 1938


Nerita vaitapihana Curtiss, 1938  , a synonym of Nerita argus Récluz, 1841 

Original description (pp. 192, 193). “The black Tahiti nerita  , which shares with the last the name of hihi, is fiveeighths of an inch long, dull black above and whitish underneath. Its shell is smooth, without the furrows of the last-described sort. Its spire is very indistinct, much more so than that of the whitish nerita  . The opening is semicircular, with very small teeth. The edge of the outer lip is sharp and black, further down, the lip becomes thicker and whiter. The animal resembles a snail, and closes its entrance with the brown membrane on the bottom of its foot. It is found on rocks along the seaside. ( Nerita vaitapihana  . (Seaside, near Tautira.))”.

Identity. The description of this “black Tahiti nerita  ” agrees well with Nerita argus Récluz, 1841  , which is known from the French Polynesia ( Tröndlé & Boutet 2009). Although the similarly relatively smooth and black N. picea  was not listed by Tröndlé & Boutet (2009), it is apparently also found in Tahiti ( Spencer et al. 2007). However, N. picea  has incised spiral grooves on its dorsal surface (see Kay 1979) and its conspecificity with N. vaitapihana  is unlikely.