The Otway Black Snail (Victaphanta compacta), class Gastropoda.

Found in the south-western part of Victoria, these snails occur in the wet forests and the cooler temperate rainforests of the Otway Ranges. The Otway Black Snails are one of four species of Victaphanta in the family Rhytididae, and one of five species of carnivorous land snails, although the Otway Black Snails are endemic to the Otway Ranges only. They are the only species in the area to have a glossy dark brown to black shell and unliked other species of Vicaphanta, the Otway Black Snail lacks the orange frill around its foot and an absence of orange mucus.

The Otway Black Snails are carnivorous snail that eat insect larvae, earthworms, slugs and other snails, although they do not eat their own species.

They are mostly nocturnal but can be seen during the day in cool, damp weather.

  • Scientific classification
  • Kingdom: Animalia
  • Phylum: Mollusca
  • Class: Gastropoda
  • Subclass: Heterobranchia
  • Superorder: Eupulmonata
  • Order: Stylommatophora
  • Family: Rhytididae
  • Genus: Victaphanta
  • Species: V. compacta
  • Binomial name: Victaphanta compacta
  • Synonyms: Paryphanta compacta

Footnote & References

  1. Otway Black Snail, SWIFFT – State Wide Integrated Flora and Fauna Teams,
  2. Photos of Otway Black Snail (Victaphanta compacta), iNaturalist,
  3. Victaphanta compacta, (last visited July 9, 2021).