Bug of the week 23: White-lipped banded snail

Have you seen these small snails around your garden? They love cool damp spaces and can be found eating common garden weeds. To determine if they are white-lipped banded snail and not their brown cousin, look for the distinctive band on their shell. 

Please be gentle and respectful to all animals and insects.

Species: Cepaea hortensis

HABITAT (WHERE THEY LIVE): The white-lipped banded snail is native to Western Europe and Central Europe. The White-Lipped banded snail was introduced to the northeastern United States. Unlike other invasive species, this snail was introduced purposefully. They prefer mild and damp conditions. They are present in Kentucky, Massachusetts, New York, Texas, Virginia and Vermont.

NUTRITION (WHAT THEY EAT): White-lipped Snail prefers to eat nettles, ragwort and hogweed as well as fungus.

PREDATORS (WHO EATS THEM): Shrews, mice, squirrels, chickens and other birds.

LIFE CYCLE: Adult snails lay clutches of 30-50 eggs. Baby snails hatch within 15-20 days and reach maturity once their shell is grown. Snails may take up to three years to be fully grown and can live up to eight years.