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The "Australian" flatworm of urban and horticultural habitats in the British Isles. It is also in many modified habitats throughout the South Island and at Oban, Stewart Island (see map blue triangles but not all records are in the database yet). It is presumed to have come from near Melbourne, Australia. At present there are two scientific names available and used to signify subspecies. This is Australoplana sanguinea alba, but it is perhaps better to call it Australoplana alba. This departs from the usage in Britain as, in New Zealand, there is another species which certainly fits the descriptions of the Australian Australoplana sanguinea. The two worms are consistently different in a number of internal features.Australoplana sanguinea is often larger and also pinkish but has a more greyish tinge to the body colours. It is an urban inhabitant of the North Island. The two species occur together in Rotorua and as there appears to be no intermediates the two names are used at the species level.
Text updated: 15/07/2006