Cepaea hortensis




Cepaea hortensis (Muller, 1774)

Common Name

White-lipped snail, Small banded snail


The glossy shell of this snail ranges in height from 10 to 18 mm and a diameter of 14 to 22 mm. The number of whorls on the shell may be either 5 - 5 1/2 depending on locality. The shell is smooth and may have a uniform color that ranges from primrose yellow, olive-yellow, grey-yellow or grey-yellow brown with the lip being white in color. The shells may have one or five stripes that are chestnut-brown in color. There are also fine growth lines on the external surface of the shell.

Cepaea nemoralis and C. hortensis can be separated by the their distinctly colored apertural lip. In adult specimens of C. nemoralis the lip is always brown, while that of C. hortensis is white. Also C. nemoralis is larger than C. hortensis.

Native Range

Western and Central Europe


North America:

  • U.S.: Massachusetts, New York, Vermont
  • Canada: Newfoundland, Quebec

Atlantic Islands: Iceland

Europe: Central and Northern


This snail typically infests greenhouses and its longevity is approximately 5 years.


  • Helix subglobosa A. Binney, 1837, Boston Journ. Nat. Hist., 1:485
  • Helix hortensis Muller, 1774. Verm. Hist., 2: 52; A. Binney, 1851, Terr. Moll., 2:111, l8 Tachea hortensis W. G. Binney, 1878, Terr. Moll., 5: 378, figs. 262, 263


Anderson 2005; Boycott 1934; Horsak 2004; Kantoret al. 2009; Kerney et al. 1979; Pilsbry 1939

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