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Key to Irish Chitons
Species Description



Leptochiton asellus (Gmelin 1791) [back to the Key] | [next] | [species list]

Length: up to 18 mm long. Animal shape can be quite round: up to 10 mm broad

Tegmentum colour: white or light grey, generally marked with short longitudinal stripes or narrow bands of grey-brown to olive green. The exposed parts of the valves are sometimes entirely covered with black mineral deposits, which will obscure the colour pattern in the shells (as in the photograph shown).

Sculpture: central areas are sculpted with longitudinal series of granules. The diagonal rib is very distinct, and the lateral areas are sculpted with radial ribs. Intermediate valves have a small beak. Valve sculpture may be obscured by mineral deposits on most of the shell.

Girdle: relatively narrow, covered with crowded scales that stand up, pointing out of the girdle.

Bathymetric range: subtidal, from low-water to 250 m.

Geographic range: common in the northeastern Atlantic

Similar species: Leptochiton cancellatus, Leptochiton scabridus

Taxonomy and Synonymy:

FAMILY: LEPTOCHITONIDAE
Leptochitonidae Dall 1889

SUBFAMILY: LEPTOCHITONINAE

GENUS: LEPTOCHITON Gray 1847

Subgenus: LEPTOCHITON s.s.

Leptochiton asellus  (Gmelin 1791 : Chiton)

= Chiton fuscatus Leach 1852
= Chiton scoticus Leach 1852
? Chiton cimicinus Spengler 1797

Synonyms (=); Dubious synonyms (?); Mis-identifications (!)