When Giant Snails Attack

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Last month, reports surfaced that South Florida was fighting a growing infestation of giant African land snails – one of the world’s most destructive invasive pest species. Now, it looks like these snails are on the move and heading west to the Lone Star state. According to NBC News, a Houston resident recently found one of the snails in her backyard garden.

The USDA says the giant African land snail can “consume at least 500 different types of plants, can cause structural damage to plaster and stucco, and can carry a parasitic nematode that can lead to meningitis in humans.”

It sounds like a scene from a horror movie, but these mollusks can grow to be as large as a rat and researchers are concerned they could spread disease.