MolluscIreland - land and freshwater
  • Testacella (Testacella) scutulum Sowerby 1820 Shield slug
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Testacella (Testacella) scutulum
© Dr Roy Anderson

Map hosted by the National Biodiversity Data Centre, Waterford
To view the species profile on Biodiversity Maps and access the live map, please click on the map.


The least rare shelled slug in Ireland. Ground colour yellow to whitish, flecked dark brown over most of the upper surface, a colour which fades rapidly in alcohol. Foot fringe and sole deep yellow to orange. Shell small and nearly triangular with the upper end of columella sharply truncate, 6-7 mm. long. Widespread in southern counties.

Key characteristics

  • A moderate-sized yellowish slug, spotted darker, and with a small shell perched near the tail
  • Foot fringe and sole yellow to orange
  • Shell small and with the upper end sharply truncate, 6-7 mm. long
  • Generally much smaller than either of the other two Testacella in Ireland


50-70 mm

World Distribution

Very similar to that of T. haliotidea. Distribution type: Mediterranean-Atlantic (91).

GBIF distribution map [open in new tab]

Irish Distribution

Scattered but less rare than other species. Not uncommon in Mid Cork and around Cork City in broadleaf woods or on waste ground and in gardens.


  • An earthworm predator living in deep, friable loams where it hunts its prey
  • Prefers warm soils over limestone
  • Usually in sheltered woodland margins or in gardens

Red List status

  • Least concern (lc).

Wikipedia link

Wikipedia page for Testacella scutulum

 Anderson, R., (2016). Testacella (Testacella) scutulum Sowerby 1820. [In] MolluscIreland. Accessed on 2024-03-02.