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Heterobranchia facts for kids

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Heterobranchia composite 03.jpg
Four examples of Heterobranchia
Scientific classification e
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Mollusca
Class: Gastropoda
Subclass: Heterobranchia
J.E. Gray, 1840
Taxonomic subcategories

informal group Lower Heterobranchia
clade Nudipleura
clade Euopisthobranchia
clade Panpulmonata

The Heterobranchs are a large group of snails and slugs. The group includes marine, aquatic and terrestrial gastropod molluscs.

Heterobranchia is one of the main clades of gastropods. It has three informal groups: The details are extremely complicated, and not yet quite worked out. Experts say they have "poorly resolved phylogenetic relationships".

  • Lower Heterobranchia: a group of rather specialized, highly evolved sea slugs and sea snails.
  • Opisthobranchia: almost all are marine species, some shelled and some not. They are a group of slugs and snails with grinding gizzard plates.
  • Pulmonata. This is a group which is familiar to most people. It includes most land snails and slugs, many freshwater snails and a few marine species. They breathe air, are hermaphrodite, and usually have no operculum.

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