Zonitoides nitidus has many adaptations to ensure that it is suited to it’s living environment. The first adaptation is the thick, calcareous shell. The thick, calcareous shell helps for protection when spotted by a predator, or for during harsh conditions. The shell of Z. nitidus is somewhat transparent, with a very glossy, olivaceous yellow color. The transparency of the shell allows Z. nitidus to stay hidden during the day. Since the transparent shell does not reflect light, when light hits the shell during the day it will not shine and attract predators (Pilsbry, 1946).

The colors that Z. nitidus has acquired helps it stay hidden from predators. The olivaceous, yellow color also helps protect the terrestrial snail. Since Z. nitidus spends most of it’s time under logs, the olive color will help it camouflage, which hides it from it’s watchful predators. The foot of Z. nitidus is very dark, and the mantle collar is very thick and deep. The darkness of the foot helps disguise the terrestrial snail as it creeps along the soil. The thickness of the deep mantle makes it hard for predators to delve into the mantle cavity, allowing another form of protection for the snail (Pilsbry, 1946).

Zonitoides nitidus belongs to the order Stylommatophora. The distinguishing characteristics of this order is the presence of two sets of tentacles, one of which bears eyes. The posterior pair of tentacles are retractable, by a process of inversion, and bear eyes at their tip (Baker, 1939). The lower pair of tentacles is shorter than the upper pair, and are used for tasting food (Hickman et al., 2008).

What and how does Zonitoides nitidus eat?