MolluscIreland - land and freshwater
  • Vertigo (Vertigo) antivertigo (Draparnaud 1801) Marsh whorl snail
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Vertigo (Vertigo) antivertigo
© Dr Roy Anderson

Map hosted by the National Biodiversity Data Centre, Waterford
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Shell dextral, characteristically globular or barrel-shaped, and appearing dark in colour. Aperture with 6-10 prominent teeth: at least 2 parietal, 2 columellar and 2 palatal. Outer lip slightly reflected and with a marked central indentation. Shell surface glossy, smooth, dark red-brown. In undisturbed wetlands. Widespread but declining.

Key characteristics

  • A tiny dark red-brown, smooth, globular shell
  • Whorls convex and sutures deep
  • Mouth with outer lip reflected and with a marked indentation
  • From 6 to 10 teeth present, at least 2 parietal, 2 columellar and 2 palatal
  • Animal very dark, almost black


1.9-2.2 mm.

World Distribution

Found across Europe from about 63 degrees N in Scandinavia through the British Isles to the Mediterranean. Distribution type: Eurosiberian Wide-temperate (64).

GBIF distribution map [open in new tab]

Irish Distribution

Locally frequent across Ireland in fens, marshes, lakeshores and riverbanks.


  • Often found on tall fen or marginal vegetation such as Juncus or Typha but also at the roots of grasses and Iris in wet, unimproved pasture
  • Its occurrence in pasture has been declining steeply due to field drainage and re-seeding

Red List status

  • Vulnerable (VU).

Wikipedia link

Wikipedia page for Vertigo antivertigo

 Anderson, R., (2016). Vertigo (Vertigo) antivertigo (Draparnaud 1801). [In] MolluscIreland. Accessed on 2024-03-02.