The Poweshiek Skipper Project

Terrestrial Snails


Euchemotrema fraternum (Say, 1824)

Upland Pillsnail

This snail is also known as Stenotrema fraternum, Polygyra fraterna, and Stenotrema fraternum.  There are also a number of subspecies or varieties identified.  

The species is widespread in the upper Midwestern states.  In Iowa it is found in most of the counties which have been surveyed.

I have found this snail fairly reliably under logs and bark in my back yard.  When I cut and split firewood it can easily be found under large pieces of bark.

Close examination of the shells of this species shows tiny scales or hairs that can rub off easily.  Older individuals, such as those that show up first thing in the spring are usually smoother.  

This would rank as a small to medium sized snail.  It gets to be about a centimeter in diameter.  It is large enough to easily see, but not so large as a number of other snails.


Young individuals can often be found in the middle of the summer.  They are typically a little more colorful and lack the developed lip and aperture tooth of the adults.