NEW INVASIVE SPECIES THREATENS LOUISIANA

Release Date: 10/23/2006

An exotic invasive species of freshwater snail has been discovered in Louisiana.  Several specimens, commonly referred to as the channeled apple snail, were collected from a canal in Gretna by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, at the request of the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries. 


These mollusks are known for their voracious appetite for aquatic vegetation.  This group of snails has been a serious pest to rice farmers in parts of southeast Asia.  Away from agricultural areas, these snails can severely impact native vegetation altering aquatic habitats.


These species can be separated from native snails by their size, up to 4 inches, and their peculiar pink egg masses.  The pink egg masses are attached to vegetation, boat docks or other structures above the surface of the water.  Under ideal conditions these snails reach maturity in three months and can lay clutches of eggs, averaging 200 to 300, every few weeks.


LDWF is asking anyone who finds snails that fit this description to please contact their nearest LDWF regional office.


For more information, contact Scott Longman at 225-765-2339 or slongman@wlf.louisiana.gov.
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