Inflectarius smithi (G. Clapp, 1905) Alabama Shagreen

A blast from the past: Inflectarius smithi

by Bob Winters

    The shell pictured below was recovered from drift collected by my wife Annette and I on March 27-28, 2020 at Johnsons Chapel Recreation Area, Center Hill Reservoir, DeKalb Co., TN. This lake is an impoundment of the Caney Fork River system, a major tributary of the Cumberland River. The specimen is likely a Pleistocene relic, the nearest living population being ca.120 miles south southwest, in Franklin County (Hubricht, 1985: map 441), and its range spreads south into adjacent northeast Alabama and occupies a total of only four counties. On that map there is also a single X, indicating a drift site collection of I. smithi from Smith Co. along the Cumberland River. That site is ca. 40 miles north northwest where this shell was found.

    At one point in time, I. smithi inhabited a much larger area than at present. Relictual shells in drift collections may have come from under dry ledges where they lay undisturbed until a massive flood or torrential downpour dislodged them in recent time.

Hubricht, L., 1985. The distributions of the native land mollusks of the Eastern United States. Fieldiana 24(1359): pp. 1-191 + viii. 28 June. <>.

Inflectarius smithi (G. Clapp, 1905) Alabama Shagreen

Digital images by Bob Winters.