Snails are an important part of the ecosystem in Nigeria, as they play a role in breaking down organic matter and aerating the soil. There are many different types of snails found in Nigeria, each with their own unique characteristics and habitats.
There are different varieties of snails that can be identified by a number of distinctive characteristics. It is unlikely that one could easily tell one snail from another. However, if adequate care is taken with the details, this can be accomplished with assurance. The snail is one of numerous creatures in the Gastropoda class that have a slimy coil-shaped shell. We’ll be talking about several kinds of snails in Nigeria in this article, with a particular emphasis on land snails. Learn more about the different kinds of snails in the country by reading on.
CLASSIFICATION OF SNAILS IN NIGERIA
Snails are divided into the following groups according to their habitat:
- Sea Snails
- Land Snails
- Freshwater Snails
Let’s now examine the varieties of snails that fit into each of these three groups.
TYPES OF SNAILS FOUND IN NIGERIA
These are the several kinds of snails that may be found in the country.
Since sea snails are also gastropods with shells, they are similar to land and freshwater snails. They may also be referred to as prosobranchs or marine snails. Sea snails are renowned for their conical or spiral-shaped shells and their delicate, flexible bodies. There are numerous species of sea snails, each with a unique diet. Several sea snails are carnivorous and only eat other marine life that is smaller. The majority of sea snails, however, consume algae, corals, plankton, and traces of vegetation. Distinct types of sea snails have different ways of breathing.
The Pacific and Indigo oceans are home to this type of snail, often known as the “magic cone.” This particular kind of sea snail has a lethal sting. The sea snail conotoxins are made up of 50,000 distinct components. Conus Magus contains poison, which is extracted and utilized to make medications that relieve pain in HIV and cancer patients.
Common Limpet is another name for this particular species of sea snail. The Patella Vulgata is a native of the western European waters. The typical habitat of this species of sea snail is rocky shorelines and shallow waters. This particular species of snail is among the most popular.
The Common Whelk is another name for the Buccinum Undatum. The common whelk is a native of the waters around the Atlantic Ocean. It lives in settings that are around 29 degrees Celsius in temperature. Due of its intolerance of air, this snail dries out when exposed to it.
Abalone is the name of this kind of sea snail. Oceans around Sao Tome and Principe in Africa are home to native abalone species. The Haliotidae family of snails includes this particular species. The abalones typically adhere to rocks and have an oval, swirling shell. These snails use plankton and algae for food.
The Common Periwinkle is scientifically known as Littorina Littorea. The snails in question have smooth spiraling shells. They can be discovered on rocks and below vessels. The Atlantic Ocean, specifically the area around North America and Western Europe, is home to a large population of common periwinkles. Good numbers of periwinkles are found in the coastal southern part of Nigeria.
The soft body of land snails is more noticeable than that of sea snails. The majority of land snail species breathe using their lungs, whereas only a small number do so through their gills. They are considered to be terrestrial snails, yet they require wetness to exist. They produce mucus that lubricates their body and makes it easier for them to move across any surface, rough or smooth. The fact that land snails have little tentacles on their heads and it is possible that they have an early brain is another distinguishing feature of these creatures.
Helix Promatia is alternatively called Roman snail and Burgundy snail. It is a common garden snail that may be found practically everywhere in Europe. This snail may grow to a height of 4 cm and has many shades of brown. This snail exclusively consumes leaves, fruits, flowers, and sap because it is a herbivore. This snail is very well notable as safe to eat.
The garden snail is the common name for the Helix Aspersa. The Americas and Oceania are two places where this snail is particularly prevalent. The snail is a herbivorous animal by nature and can be found in gardens, as its name suggests. Owing to its predation on crops, this snail is viewed as a menace to humans. Pesticides are used to get rid of it.
Kenya and the Tanzanian coast are the native habitats of this snail. There are also hot, humid regions in the world where the Achatina Fulica can be found. The snail stands 10 to 30 cm tall. The stripes of yellow and brown on the snail’s shell are an obvious characteristic. It is nighttime when this snail is active.
Another name for Rumina decollata snail is the decollate snail. Several regions of Africa, North America, and Europe are home to the Rumina Decollata. Since it is a carnivorous snail by nature, it is employed in pest control. They are active at night as well.
The Otala Punctata snail is native to the southern regions of Spain, several South American countries, Algeria, and the United States. The snail’s spiral shell and white spots are distinguishing characteristics. The Otala Punctata consumes only plants.
The majority of freshwater snails kept as pets are aquarium snails. Freshwater snails come in hundreds of different kinds. They can be discovered in rivers, lakes, and lagoons.
The New Zealand Mud Snail is another name for Potamopyrgus Antipodarum. This snail is native to North America, Europe, and New Zealand. The snail’s large shell and its variable, gray- or white-colored expiration are two distinguishing characteristics.
Pomacea canaliculata is a well-known aquarium snail often known as the Golden Apple Snail. The snail only lives in freshwaters in the far-off countries of Japan, Australia, and India.
The Plicata Rocksnail is another name for Leptoxis plicata. The United States is the native home of this snail. A shift in the snail’s natural environment could endanger it.
Spain’s freshwater ecosystem is the primary home to this snail. There are observations of this snail in 63 different places. This snail’s existence is threatened by pollution and human misuse of its habitat.
Herault Valley’s freshwater is home to this kind of snail. We don’t know how many different species of this snail there are.
Snail farming is a type of self-employment that can aid in the fight against food insecurity. It is also an excellent source of revenue, although it is not practiced much in Nigeria. The country’s demand for snails is skyrocketing, but there aren’t enough of them to go around. It is important to protect and preserve the snail population in Nigeria, as they play a vital role in the ecosystem. Protecting their habitats and limiting the use of pesticides can help to ensure the continued survival of these fascinating creatures.