An Illustrated and Cross-Referenced Glossary of
Malacological and Conchological Terms

by Paul S. Mikkelsen

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Term Definition

PROVINCE   A portion of the earth in which there exists a more or less distinct faunal or floral assemblage. This assemblage may be limited from extending its boundaries by either physical or environmental barriers, or both. As some physical barriers are not entirely impassible for some species, the boundaries may not appear as distinct lines, but rather broad transitional zones; see also: PROVINCE, (types).

PROVINCE, ALEUTIAN   [need definition]. See also: PROVINCE, (types).

PROVINCE, AUSTRORIPARIAN   That province covering the southern and southeastern coastal plain and characterized by the presence of Polygyra septemvolva and Polygyra auriculata. Similar to the TEXAN PROVINCE which is characterized by Polygyra texasiana. See also: PROVINCE, (types).

PROVINCE, BOREAL   A cold-water zone, depauperate of species, lying north of Cape Cod and the CAROLINIAN PROVINCE. See also: PROVINCE, (types).

PROVINCE, CALIFORNIAN   A cool-water region stretching from Washington (below the ALEUTIAN PROVINCE) to parts of Lower California (above the Panamic Province), and rich in abalones, Murex rock shells, limpets, and chitons. See also: PROVINCE, (types).

PROVINCE, CARIBBEAN   A warm-water region centered in the West Indies, extending north to the Florida Keys and Bermuda, and southward to Brazil. Characteristic species are the QUEEN CONCH, Wide-mouthed Purpura and the Sunrise Tellin; see also: PROVINCE, (types).

PROVINCE, CAROLINIAN   A temperate-water region extending from the south shore of Cape Cod to the northern half of Florida and westward to Texas. It is characterized by QUAHOG clams (Mercenaria), See also: PROVINCE, (types).

PROVINCE, CUMBERLAND   A subdivision of the EAST AMERICAN PROVINCE. This is the most distinct province in the eastern division, typified by the genera: Clappiella, Gastrodonta, Pilsbryna, and Vitrinizonites. See also: PROVINCE, (types).

PROVINCE, EAST AMERICAN   That zone extending from the plains bordering the eastern limit of the rocky mountains the Atlantic Coast. It is further subdivided into the NORTH AMERICAN, INTERIOR, CUMBERLAND, TEXAN, and AUSTRORIPARIAN PROVINCES. See also: PROVINCE, (types).

PROVINCE, INDO-PACIFIC   The largest and richest shell region in the world. Its boundaries extend from East Africa eastward through the East Indies to Polynesia. The region is characterized by tropical, warm waters and coral reefs. See also: PROVINCE, (types).

PROVINCE, INTERIOR   A subdivision of the EAST AMERICAN PROVINCE. See also: PROVINCE, (types).

PROVINCE, JAPANESE   That temperate region lying between the cold-water ALEUTIAN PROVINCE and the tropical Indo-Pacific. See also: PROVINCE, (types).


PROVINCE, MEDITERRANEAN   That region consisting of the Mediterranean Sea and extending around Portugal to southern France and along the northwest coast of Africa; = LUSITANEAN PROVINCE. See also: PROVINCE, (types).

PROVINCE, MIDDLE AMERICAN   The terrestrial faunal province which includes the south tip of Florida and Texas, the West Indies, Bermuda, Central America and most of Mexico. See also: PROVINCE, (types).

PROVINCE, NORTH AMERICAN   A subdivision of the EAST AMERICAN PROVINCE. The Northern Province does not differ greatly in the characteristics of its land snail fauna from that of the INTERIOR PROVINCE, but its climate is too severe for any but the most hardy species. It is typified mainly by small zonitids and pupillids. See also: PROVINCE, (types).

PROVINCE, PANAMIC   That tropical region extending from the Gulf of California to northern Ecuador. Because it was connected to the Caribbean in past geologic times, the fauna resembles that of the West Indies. The region is typified by presence of the genus Strombina. See also: PROVINCE, (types).

PROVINCE, SOUTH AFRICAN   A cool-water region around the southern tip of Africa, the zone is rich in giant limpets, turbans, Thais rock shells, plus strange cool-water cowries and cone shells. See also: PROVINCE, (types).

PROVINCE, TEXAN   That province covering most of Texas, that is typified by the presence and abundance of Polygyra texasiana and related species. Similar to the AUSTRORIPARIAN PROVINCE which is typified by other species of Polygyra. See also: PROVINCE, (types).

PROVINCE, WEST AMERICAN   That faunal province west of the rockies. See also: PROVINCE, (types).

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