Land snails of the University of Michigan Biological Station area

TitleLand snails of the University of Michigan Biological Station area
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication1988
AuthorsBurch JB, Jung Y

The purpose of this publication is to describe the land Mollusca (snails and slugs) of The University of Michigan Biological Station (UMBS) area, i.e., the northern portion of the lower Peninsula of Michigan. As considered here, this area comprises the three northern-most counties of the Lower Peninsula, i.e., Emmet, Cheboygan and Presque Isle counties (Fig. 1). This is an area of nearly 2,200 square miles, bordered on the west by Lake Michigan, on the north and east by the Straits of Mackinac and Lake Huron, and on the south by Charelvoix, Otsego, Montmorency and Alpena counties. The climax vegetation of the area consists mainly of Northern Hardwoods, Pine, and Conifer Bog and Swamp communities. For land snails, the first, the Northern Hardwoods Community, is of particular significance. These communities provide mesic conditions and nutrient-adequate habitats. In Pine communities, the soil is sandy, often dry, acid and poor in nutrients, all unfavorable circumstances for land snails. Conifer bog and Swamp Communities are generally considered poor habitats for land snails, due to conifers and bog shrubs, the high water tables, and the acid and calcium-poor conditions. However, in this area some snails occur in such habitats, and a few species thrive there. There are a few published records of land snails of the three counties under consideration. The records below come mostly from our own collecting in the area and the specimens housed in the Museum of Zoology, The University of Michigan.