Sunday, June 27, 2010

Snail invasion sends people into a tizzy

Thiruvananthapuram: Routs of snails are invading parts of the city, sending residents into a tizzy, amid fears that they would pose a health hazard.

Over the last few days, armies of snails have been sighted at Vallakkadavu, Melarannoor and Vanchiyoor, climbing walls and nibbling through vegetation in some areas. The slimy shelled creatures have been classified as the giant African land snail, one of the worst invasive species in the world.

Scientists are not sure of the reasons for the abrupt proliferation of snails here but the general inference is that it has been triggered by climate change. �The alternating hot and cold temperature over the past few weeks could have created conditions conducive for fast multiplication of the creatures, says S. Devanesan, Professor at the Entomology division, College of Agriculture, Vellayani. �We have received reports about the proliferation of slugs and millipedes also,� he said.

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