Due to heavy rains in Southern California last winter we have a bumper crop
of snails. Our home is surrounded by aptinia iceplant. Apparently they
multiply in there and then crawl all over the house, especially the windows
and walls, leaving slimy trails and their empty shells.
What is the best and cheapest way to get rid of them permanently (this
summer at least)? I have tried the perimeter liquid snail bait. It worked in
prior years, but the snails may have evolved or they are stepping on each
others bodies to get to my windows.
You must be doing something very interesting in there :-)
Snails grow quite slowly, so you can make a fast impact on a local
population by collecting them in a bucket for rehoming. Damp evenings
are often best. Children can be bribed per results. My sister lives in a
snail nirvana and finds a bucket campaign each spring keeps numbers down
enough to make gardening possible.
I suggest the use of carnivorous decollate snails, which are legal
and available in southern California. See
<URL:http://axp.ipm.ucdavis.edu/PMG/r107500111.html . Note that
decollates are NOT legal in northern California, where they feed on
native snails that might be endangered species. The brown snails
that create such destruction in southern California are not native
and thus not protected.
David E. Ross
Climate: California Mediterranean
the 'rosy' predator snails are supposed to devour the escargot-type snails
and when their food source runs out, they're supposed to just die. there is
a company in cali which sells them (can't remember the company, sorry....CRS
has been extremely bad since massive humidity hit the northeast), but google
it. use the search words: snails eating snails that is where i got the
The decollate snail (Rumina decollata) described on the same Web
page is considered superior by commercial citrus growers for
controlling the brown snail (Helix aspersa). The latter is a
serious orchard pest in citrus groves, girdling and killing trees
by eating the bark.
The release of decollate snails is restricted to certain southern
California counties. They are prohibited in northern California
because the prey on endangered native snails.
The brown snail is NOT a native, having been intentionally imported
some 150 years ago as a source of escargot.
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