epiphragm


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epiphragm

(ˈɛpɪˌfræm)
n
(Zoology) a disc of calcium phosphate and mucilage secreted by snails over the aperture of their shells before hibernation
[C19: via New Latin from Greek epiphragma a lid, from epiphrassein, from epi- + phrassein to place in an enclosure]
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References in periodicals archive ?
Anatomical adaptations include increased shell thickness (Cameron, 1970) and the secretion of an epiphragm (Machin, 1975); behavioral adaptations include choice of microhabitat, huddling, contact rehydration, and reduction in physical activity (Prior et al., 1983;Prior, 1985; Bantu et al., 1988, 1990); physiological adaptations include the reduction of metabolic activity (Cameron, 1970; Vorhaben et al., 1984), modification of respiratory rhythms (Prioretal, 1983; Prior, 1985; Barnhart, 1986; Barnhart et al., 1987; Banta et al., 1988, 1990; Arad, 1990), and alterations in excretory products (Duerr, 1967; Haggag and Fouad, 1968; Smith and Smith, 1998; Chukwuka et al., 2014).
During dry periods the snails seek more shaded, well protected sites and bury themselves more deeply, if the soil permits, but we have never encountered any specimens with an epiphragm, even in those living in relatively dry habitats.
Description.--Fruiting bodies: Cup-shaped containing numerous spore packets, 4-5 mm high, 6-7 mm wide, sessile; margin of cup flared slightly or tapered downward; outer surface tan, velvety; inner surface pallid, smooth and shiny; mouth initially covered with an epiphragm, which is coarsely tomentose.
It secretes an epiphragm to seal its shell and prevent desiccation.