Scientific Name Cipangopaludina japonica (von Martens, 1861)
Latin Meaning:  cipan=to keep.  paludis=swamp, marsh (McCarthy, 2011).
                            dina and ica=feminine endings.
                                japonica refers to it's origination in Japan.

Common Name:  Japanese Mystery Snail

Snails within the family Viviparidae are called the mystery snails (Kohl, 2008). Cipangopaludina japonica originated from Japan, giving this snail the common name of Japanese Mystery Snail.

Domain:  Eukarya
    Kingdom:  Animalia
        Phylum:  Mollusca
            Class:  Gastropoda
                Subclass:  Prosobranchia
                    Order:  Architaenioglossa
                        Family:  Vivparidae
                            Genus:  Cipangopaludina
Species:  Cipangopaludina japonica

Domain Eukarya
Members of this categorization contain eukaryotic cells and membraneous organelles.  Eukaryotic indicates that the organism has a true nucleus.  The presense of a true nucleus is what differentiates Eukarya from the Archaea and the Eubacteria domains (Kaiser, 2011).

Kingdom Animalia:
This is a multicellular organism that does not contain cell walls or photosynthetic pigments.  The snail obtains their food through heterotrophic means.  They form a diploid blastula, which organize into tissues, thus classifying them as animals (Myers, 2001).

Phylum Mollusca:
Mollusks are triploblastic acoelomates that attain bilateral symmetry.  Characteristics include the presence of a radula, mantle, open circulatory system, and a complete digestive system, which is complete with a mouth and an anus.  Reproduction is normally sexual.  Mollusca typically has a ventral muscular foot for means of locomotion.  This phylum is found to live in most environments (Ramel, 2002).

Class Gastropoda:
This class uses a muscular foot to move in a creeping motion.  The head is well-developed with eyes and tentacles.  Most species have a protective shell that is usually a spiral coil.  The gastropoda often has a operculum, which is a hard plate structure that seals the opening when the snail draws its body into their shell (Parsons, ed. 1997).

Subclass Prosobranchia:
This subclass signifies that the internal organs (gills, mantle cavity and anus) are positioned in front of the heart.  The operculum is located on the dorsal surface of the muscular foot.  Torsion development occurs which places the anus and mantle cavity both directly above the head, and the nerve cords forming in the shape of a figure-8.  The eyes are located at the base of the tentacles (Fenner, 2000).

Order Architaenioglossa:
This order is united by the possession of a horny operculum, a thick coiled shell, a pointy spire, and a shell that is medium to large in size with at least four whorls.  This order is up to 10 mm in length (Ponder, 2001).

Family Viviparidae:
This family designation indicates they give birth to live small snails instead of laying eggs.  The male has a right tentacle that is shorter and thicker than the left.  The right tentacle acts as a penis in the reproduction process (Animal Diversity Web, 2000).

Genus Cipangopaludina:
The shell is comparatively larger than other organisms within Architaenioglossa.  The walls of the shell are thick.  Their operculum is thin and has concentric markings (Burch, 1980).

Species Cipangopaludina japonica:
Distinguished from other species because it has 7-8 whorls with the spire at an angle between 50 and 55 degrees.  The umbilicus is very narrow and dark in color.  As juveniles, they are lighter in color and have hairs on the ridges of the shell.  As adults, they turn darker brown and the ridges are less pronounced (Jokinen, 1982).

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