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Giant African Snails Invading the Caribbean

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Imagine the size of a common garden snail. Now multiply it several times.

Now you get an idea of the size of giant African land snails. They can grow to the size of a rat and are an extremely destructive pest, eating anything green in their wake.

That’s why they are considered among the worst invasive species in the world.

Though originally from east Africa, researchers discovered that last summer that they have now reached Havana in Cuba, a finding they outline in a new report in Molluscan Research.

That’s an issue, not only for Cuba’s plants, but for Cuban snails. The snails however have now found themselves in other Caribbean ISLANDS. download

If you see these snails anywhere in the Caribbean  report them to the department of Agriculture .  They are reported to have reached Antigua and Anguilla.

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The Giant African Snail (Lissachatina fulica or GAS) was first found in southern Florida in the 1960s, and it took 10 years and $1 million to eradicate it. It was reintroduced in 2011, and eradication efforts are currently underway. GAS is one of the most damaging snails in the world because it consumes at least 500 types of plants and can cause structural damage to plaster and stucco structures. This snail can also carry a parasitic nematode that can lead to meningitis in humans. One of the most damaging snails in the world. GAS reproduces quickly, producing about 1,200 eggs in a single year.

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