Saturday, 26 January 2008

Giant African Land Snails!

So I finally have some photos to share of my daughter's snail!

She has called it 'Slipper' and is very attached to it! I even had to email the ebay seller to get it's date of birth/hatching, so she can celebrate it's birthday later in the year!

So the slimy details: the shell is currently around 5cm long, it's an Achatina Fulica - which basically means it's an East African Land Snail, it hatched on 10th August 07, his or her mummy is called Tweedle Dee (Tweedle Dee is is 4 years old and a very large snail at a 7 1/2" shell.) It likes to each fruit and veg - especially cucumber and pears, and has to have some form of calcium like a cuttlefish bone (for its shell.)

I now know why folks in the States haven't heard of them - apparently it's illegal to have/keep them as pets over there - as they are simultaneous hermaphrodite and very invasive as it only takes any 2 and they breed like wildfire! We are certainly going to just keep to the one as I don't want to wake up one morning to find 100s of eggs in the tank! (Lots are sold on as reptile owners buy them to breed - for feed!) Having said that I have just read 'Instances of self fertilisation are rare' - so I had better not be too complacent!

Cleaning out is like a military operation - done out the back with a hose pipe, rubber gloves and lots of face pulling (uggghhhh!) Would I recommend one? Yes, my daughter loves it and it's not too hard to clean I guess. Certainly easy to feed! The good news - it was only 99p to buy on ebay - the bad, it cost around £50 to buy a tank and kit it out - but still pretty cheap for a pet!



Ali said...

yeuck! (but you are a good mum to let her have something so yeucky! -not sure I could do it)

I think your cards are much prettier!

kraftykathy1 said...

I am glad the snail is at your house and not mine, like the pictures though!

Kim said...

Oh I'll have to show that to my 8-year old who is wanting a pet - he's thinking turtle? Kim sbs8

Frances said...

eeww, rather you than me lol The things you do for your kids! (maybe why I haven't got any yet :))

You'll need to update us now, as I'd love to see how big it grows to if mummy got to 7.5"!

p.s still working on your SU challenge. Bit tough as I've only got the 1 set!

Julie's Crafty Corner said...

Glad they are at your house and not mine:-). Nice photos though!

Julie SBS-8

Mike Coscia said...

Where did you purchase him I have been looking everywhere for one!