Giant Snails Cause Quarantine In Florida
I know what you’re thinking right now…“give me some garlic butter and a grill and I’ll take care of that snail problem right now!’. But sadly, it’s not that easy.
A portion of Florida was placed under quarantine recently due to an infestation of an extremely crappy visitor, a huge snail called the Giant African Land Snail (GALS). It has the not-so-great title of being the most damaging snail on Earth, which can’t be good for Florida. These mucus-trailing goo-globs can screw up a good thing if you let them. First, they eat about 500 different types of plants, so they’re not picky. Second, they like to bang and have little baby snails, which become big snails very quickly. During a recent test in Pasco County, over 4,000 of the snails were found. That’s far too many for a cookout, and you wouldn’t want to eat them anyway. They carry a parasite called rat lungworm, which not only sounds hideous, it can cause menengitis in humans.
The recent gathering of the snails was not the first attempt to get rid of the unwelcome guests in Florida. On two sperate occasions, we thought we had eradticated the species from our shores, but it has sprung back from the brink of extinction twice now. To make things worse, the snails that were tested from Pasco County tested positive for rat lungworm. Ugh. That’s when the quarantine of the snails was put into effect. The snails can be identified by their dark brown shells with milky white flesh. Sexy, huh? Thankfully, there are products available to smoke the slippery wads of goo. The Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services recommends using Metaldehyde. While it kills slugs and snails, it won’t harm vegatables, flowers or citrus plants. Pasco County will be treating the area soon, with residents being notified in person or by written notice with plenty of time to prepare for the spraying. Source: WFLA.com
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