Rosy Wolf Snail
Euglandina rosea

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The Rosy Wolf Snail is a terrestrial snail, whose natural distribution is in the southern United States. It is distinguished by its long and slender soft body and the almost translucent rosy shell. The shell is 2 to 3 inches long; usually higher than wide.

The lips protrude like tentacles thus appearing as though it has 6 tentacles instead of 4.

The explanation for these characteristic features is that Euglandina is a predator snail that does not have the name "wolf snail" without reason. Its favorite prey are small terrestrial snails. It locates them by their slime trace with chemical receptors in the prolonged lips and then pursues them with an average speed 2 to 3 times faster than its prey. When it catches up with its meal, the wolf snail eats the smaller snails as whole. The larger snails are turned around and eaten through the aperture. Once another snail is attacked by the wolf snail there is no escape. It also eats other wolf snails. Young wolf snails freshly hatched begin immediately to crawl around and go after prey. Smaller siblings are eaten. So by this cannibalistic behavior the larger snails grow at the expense of the smaller ones.

This snail is an aid to the gardener as it also eats slugs. Small slugs are eaten whole and larger ones are eaten in pieces.

The wolf snail was sent to Hawaii to eat the foreign snails that were driving out local native snails. Unfortunately, it found the native snails more tasty and nearly drove local snails to extinction. A classic case of bad conservation.

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