Deroceras agreste

Family

Agriolimacidae

Species

Deroceras agreste (Linnaeus, 1758)

Common Name

Field slug, Grey field slug, Milky slug

Description

This slug attains a maximum length of 50 mm when fully extended. It is pale brown to tan in color and does not have any conspicuous body markings. The head and tentacles are dark-brown. The tubercles of this species are not prominent. The sole is white and normally produces clear mucus, however the sole will produce milky white mucus when the animal is disturbed. In order to confirm the identity of this species, dissection and observation of the genitalia are required.

Deroceras agreste. The penis (p) of this species is broad with only a single appendix.

Deroceras caucasicum: The penis is broad and has two appendixes at the tip with the vas deferens emerges between them. The posterior edge of the penis is pigmented (dark-colored) and there is a hard "clam-shaped" shell-like plate inside the penis.

Deroceras laeve: The penis of this species is long, narrow and mostly twisted, with only a single appendix. It should be noted that a penis may be absent in some specimens.

Deroceras panormitanum: The penis in the species is broad and markedly bilobed with 4-6 appendixes.

Deroceras reticulatum: The penis (p) in the species is broad with only a single, irregularly branched appendix.

Native Range

Western Palaearctic

Distribution

Asia

Europe: North and Central including Scandinavia and Russia

Ecology

Habitats of this species include moist, natural and lightly disturbed grassy areas. It has also been noted to tolerate marshy habitats. This species has been reported as a common pest of agricultural crops (e.g., lettuce), seedlings and wild flowers. It also consumes dead vegetation, therefore allowing it to survive periods of fallow. It typically lives for a year. Upon maturity it will lay eggs approximately 10 days after mating. The incubation period of this slug is about 3 weeks.

Synonyms

  • Limax agrestis Linnaeus, 1758
  • Agriolimax agrestis (Linnaeus)
  • Agriolimax fedschenkoi Koch et Heynemann, 1874
  • Agriolimax transcaucasicus coeciger Simroth, 1901

References

Anderson 2005; Kantor et al. 2009; Kerney et al. 1979; Niemela 1998; Wiktor 2000

Posted on 09 - 02 - 11