Mesodon pennsylvanicus
Proud globelet

Key Characteristics

The proud globelet (Mesodon pennsylvanicus, also Helix pennsylvanica and Polygyra pennsylvania) is characterized by a yellowish, globose shell of about .8 inches in diameter with a high spire and 6 obliquely striated whorls. The body is coarsely granulated, of a dark gray color above and lighter below.

Status and Rank

  • State Status: SC
  • State Rank: SNR
  • Global Rank: G4


County NameNumber of OccurrencesYear Last Observed
Distribution map for Mesodon pennsylvanicus

Updated 5/15/2018. Information is summarized from MNFI's database of rare species and community occurrences. Data may not reflect true distribution since much of the state has not been thoroughly surveyed.


The proud globelet is typically found in heavily wooded ravines (Baker 1939).

Natural Community Types


For each species, lists of natural communities were derived from review of the nearly 6,500 element occurrences in the MNFI database, in addition to herbarium label data for some taxa. In most cases, at least one specimen record exists for each listed natural community. For certain taxa, especially poorly collected or extirpated species of prairie and savanna habitats, natural community lists were derived from inferences from collection sites and habitat preferences in immediately adjacent states (particularly Indiana and Illinois). Natural communities are not listed for those species documented only from altered or ruderal habitats in Michigan, especially for taxa that occur in a variety of habitats outside of the state.

Natural communities are not listed in order of frequency of occurrence, but are rather derived from the full set of natural communities, organized by Ecological Group. In many cases, the general habitat descriptions should provide greater clarity and direction to the surveyor. In future versions of the Rare Species Explorer, we hope to incorporate natural community fidelity ranks for each taxon.


Habitat loss, fragmentation and degradation are considered the greatest threats to land snail species (Kay 1995). Depending mainly on moist microhabitats with a thick organic litter layer and rich, uncompacted soil (Nekola 2003), forest dwelling snails may be negatively affected by increased edge area, forest canopy reductions, and the loss of vegetative ground cover, as microhabitat characteristics will be altered (Applegarth 1999, Gotmark et al. 2008, Walden 1995). Fire can negatively affect land snail populations and microhabitats. Large downed logs may provide important refuges during periods of fire and drought, and should be retained (Applegarth 1999). Locating important proud globelet habitat areas will be an important first step toward protecting this species. Snails bioaccumulate chemical pollutants and heavy metals (Berger and Dallinger 1993, Regoli et al. 2006), and high exposure has been found to prevent reproduction (Notten et al. 2006). Where vulnerable gastropods may be present, herbicides and insecticides should be applied with caution and affected populations monitored.

Active Period

Breeding from first week of May to fourth week of June

Survey Methods

As visual detection of this species is difficult, specimens are collected by litter sampling in suitable habitat. Samples are thoroughly heat-dried, soaked in water for a number of hours to separate the various components, and finally passed through a series of sieves. The shells are then able to be hand-picked from the remaining sample material (Nekola 2003).

Page Citation

Michigan Natural Features Inventory. 2007. Rare Species Explorer (Web Application). Available online at [Accessed Aug 17, 2018]


Survey References

Technical References

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