Australopacifica scaphoidea (Skiff planarian)

A robust planarian, some 60 - 70 mm long and 4-5 mm wide when crawling. Body shape suggestive of a skiff (scaphoid shape), with parallel sides, with the hind end tapering more abruptly to a point than the more tapered anterior end. Dorsal ground colour cream to pale yellow. The mid third width of the back is mid brown through which runs a thin median stripe of ground colour from the hind end along the back to merge with the brown pigment of the head. The outer thirds of the back are dark brown with a thin darker brown to black outer edge sharply demarcated from the light brown-mottled ground colour. The latter continues to the submarginal zome where there is a clear mottle-free white submarginal stripe in the middle of which runs a thin dark brown stripe. Below the white submarginal stripe, the brown mottling aggregates to form a distinct stripe along the margin of the ventral surface. The ventral surface is white to cream coloured, with fine even brown stippling that concentrates either side of a broad stipple-free mid ventral stripe. The eyes contour the brown anterior tip in a single row, cluster in an elongate strip anterolaterally before continuing along the sides to the hind end in a single staggered row. Mouth approximately mid body, genital pore about half way between the mouth and the posterior end. The back may exhibit iridescence, especially noticable on the darker stripes. There may also be little differentiation of the brown stripes dorsally - all the same brown colour. Similarly the marginal stippling may aggregate into more than two stripes. Occurrence: The species is native to Queensland (from far northern to southern Queensland), and possibly northern NSW. The species has been spread via the plant trade to urban gardens in southern NSW, the ACT, Victoria, SA and WA. 

Australopacifica scaphoidea is listed in the following regions:

Canberra & Southern Tablelands  |  South Coast

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