Sunday, February 20, 2011

Just a snail

Another day I'll figure out what genus and/or species of snail this just happened to catch my eye.

UPDATE MARCH 24, 2011–This just in from snail expert/Mollusk Man Max S. Anton: "Your snail is almost certainly Otala lactea, though there may be some similar Helicidae in your area whose species have not yet been differentiated. But in all probability, it's a milk snail. Great blog, by the way. And that photo is fantastic. Please let me know if you post more snail-related articles, I'd love to see them."
Thank YOU, Max! 

As for Otala lactea, it's nonnative. 

According to "Snails and Slugs" written by the late J.A. Jackman, "Other exotic land snails are also garden pests in Texas. Milk snail, Otala lactea, is often common in many parts of Texas, particularly in urban areas, and chocolate-banded snail, Eobania vermiculata, has populations in central and southeastern Texas. Both are closely related to brown garden snail, but are slightly smaller in size. Both have also been used as escargot."

Get out the forks?

More from Max: "All Helicidae are exotic, having been imported from Europe and Asia Minor. The milk snail is formerly known as the Spanish Edible Snail, so it is probably more closely associated with the Iberian Peninsula and North Africa. I'm not sure how Otala lactea found its way specifically to the Hill Country, but most likely, it migrated there after being introduced in other parts of the country for the escargot trade. Snails have a knack for hitching rides in potted plants, shipping crates, and other transported goods."


Sybil Jones said...

Let us know the real species. According to my husband telling my 6 yr old, they are flesh eating snails, only because when the 6 yr old discovered them on our cedar fence last spring, A BUNCH took up residence in my kitchen, in my measuring cups. So that seem to solve that problem. for now.

Sheryl Smith-Rodgers said...

Hmmm, I'd better get on this ASAP! Right now, I'm working on our native plant list, which is turning into a HUGE INVENTORY of what we're growing.

sybil said...

THANKS! how interesting, when researched on my end, I came to about the same conclusion, but discredited it since the info I was reading didnt show them to be around this area. I have not seen them till last spring, and I've lived on this place all my life. wonder how....? Same as all the other non natives around here I suppose!

Sheryl Smith-Rodgers said...

Somebody let'em out!?

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