What they lack in speed, they make up in ability to eat and procreate. Giant African land snails — and by giant, we mean up to a foot long — have proliferated in several neighborhoods in Miami, Fla. Like all slugs and snails, these ghastly gastropods do eat plants, but these are also a threat to homes. (You read that right. They eat stucco.) If that’s not enough, they also harbor an exotic worm that can transmit meningitis to humans. Thankfully, there’s an all-hands effort to put the exotic pests on ice. We mean that in a literal sense — Florida ag officials execute them by putting them in a freezer. This is the third time the snails have invaded Florida; they were exterminated twice before, though at significant cost. This is yet another reminder of why the fight against invasive pests and pathogens is so important.
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About Curt Kipp
Curt Kipp is the director of publications and communications at the Oregon Association of Nurseries, and the editor of Digger magazine.