Probably NOT a Ghost Slug in Maryland

Subject: White slug
Location: Central Maryland
May 20, 2016 7:17 pm
I found this in the middle of the street on a rainy day crawling along. Googling matches its picture with the ghost slug, but what I can find says they are only in Europe. My friends and I are having a discussion about it and hope you can help us.
Signature: Wondering

Possibly Ghost Slug
Probably NOT a Ghost Slug

Dear Wondering,
We cannot say for certain that this is or is not a white variation or an albino individual of a species that was already locally established in your area, but we are pretty certain it is NOT the Ghost Slug pictured on Wikipedia and the National Museum Wales site.  According to the National Museum Wales:  “The bizarre Ghost Slug made headlines in 2008 when described as a new species from a Cardiff garden. When the first specimens were found, very little was known about this animal.”  The site continues that to:  “ensure that your slug is a true Ghost Slug (Selenochlamys ysbryda). This can be done by looking at the mantle and the eyes. The mantle … looks like a layer of skin through which the breathing hole is often visible.  This Ghost Slug has a tiny, disc-shaped mantle at the rear end of its body. It has no eye spots on its tentacles … .  Other white or pale slug species have a large, cloak-like mantle over their “shoulders” near the front of their body. They have black eye spots at the tips of two of their tentacles.”  Your individual has both the mantle and the eyespots which indicates it is NOT a Ghost Slug.  

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