Smile! The world is a beautiful place (^_^)

snails

Today I’ve been photographing snails. Not my favorite animals, but quite interesting in their weirdness πŸ™‚

The Roman snail (Helix pomatia), a.k.a. Burgundy snail or escargot, is a species of large, edible, air-breathing land snail, a mollusk in the family Helicidae. These were introduced by catholic monks in the middle ages. The monks came to spread knowledge and religious traditions, including fasting where you’re not supposed to eat anything. Except snails, apparently! They were allowed, so the monks brought snails with them. Still today, escargots are eaten in many countries and in France alone they eat more than 500 million per year!

Look at that face.. It has four tenacles, and you can see the eye spots at the tips:

They’re very big, around 10 cm long and the shell is about 5 cm tall. In the picture below it looks like the Roman snail “attacked” or ate the Grove snail, but it didn’t. They are vegetarians, and not cannibalistic. But notice the difference in size compared to the Grove snail:

Here are two Garden snails (Cornu aspersum). I think they might have been mating, but I’m not sure. Maybe they were fighting (do snails fight?) or just hanging out together. This is another kind of edible snail, in France it’s called “Petit gris” and in Spain (mainly in the Andalusian region) you can hear street vendors shout “Caracoles! Caracoles!” when they sell these as snacks.

Here’s a little Grove snail (Cepaea nemoralis), dining on a dead leaf:

And finally, here’s a picture of a local hotspot:

 

 

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21 responses

  1. I don’t like them either, but I find them interesting. πŸ˜‰

    June 25, 2017 at 6:06 PM

  2. What a brilliant post Camilla. The pics are great of course and it must have been a nice break taking pictures of something so easy to keep up with😊 Your comments set a new high water mark and I’m going to recommend your site to any teachers I know. It’s a phenomenal place to learn about nature!

    June 25, 2017 at 6:33 PM

    • Thanks so much, Tony! Yes, it was a nice change.. The Roman snail migrate up to maximum 6 meters, so I could easily keep up πŸ˜€ The poor guys don’t stand a chance against peckish Frenchmen!

      June 25, 2017 at 6:44 PM

  3. Wonderful creatures, Camilla, but i’m glad i’m a vegetarian! They may be nutritious, but they are slimy-mucousy! πŸ™‚

    June 25, 2017 at 8:10 PM

  4. A fabulous post with some great images! I find snails can be quite difficult to photograph as something has to give with the depth of field, but you have captured some really nice images here! I have yet to see a Roman Snail. I may be too far north.

    June 25, 2017 at 10:01 PM

    • Thanks a lot, Pete! They’re not very common here either, or maybe it’s just that I haven’t paid attention. But it was a nice find yesterday! πŸ™‚

      June 26, 2017 at 6:28 AM

  5. I am willing to try lots of things, but I just can’t bring myself to eat a snail. They are however pretty cool looking!

    June 25, 2017 at 11:51 PM

    • Didn’t you eat bugs on a stick in Asia? πŸ˜‰ I tried escargot once, never again is all I can say about that experience!

      June 26, 2017 at 6:30 AM

      • I was willing to eat bugs on a stick in Philippines, but didn’t get the opportunity. I’d eat an insect before a snail, no question.

        June 27, 2017 at 5:00 AM

  6. Fascinating pictures Camilla!

    June 26, 2017 at 3:11 PM

  7. Crazy story about the monks and fasting – I love it! We’re having a good chuckle here. It’s hard to imagine finding a live Roman snail, they’re so big. As always, I learn something, I’m entertained, and the photographs are terrific.

    June 26, 2017 at 9:34 PM

    • Thanks so much, Lynn! I remember the first time I saw a Roman snail, I was around 7 years old and thought it was just a very old snail and that they’d all get that big with age πŸ™‚

      June 27, 2017 at 5:59 AM

  8. Hi, Camilla
    More stunning macro / close up shots! And the colours are wonderful. πŸ™‚
    John

    June 27, 2017 at 9:12 AM

    • Thanks so much, John! It was perfect weather; sunny enough for all kind of critters to come out, but not too sunny for the photographs πŸ™‚

      June 27, 2017 at 9:39 AM

  9. I’ve never seen a white snail before!!
    But I sure wish the brown ones we have would stop munching in my garden! πŸ™‚
    These are wonderful images, Calee.

    June 28, 2017 at 4:40 PM

    • Thanks a lot, Lisa! πŸ™‚ Yes, they can be real peasts, especially some type of slugs like the Spanish slug cause a lot of damage.

      June 28, 2017 at 5:42 PM

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