- Achatina. giant African land snails
If you decide to have such an unusual pet as a snail, you should familiarize yourself with their features in more detail. First of all, you need to decide what type of snail you like. It is possible as a breeding of grape snails, and African at home. From the point of view of aesthetics and exotics, African ones are much more attractive. But they also practice the cultivation of grape mollusks.
It should be understood that they are grown not only for beauty, but there is a whole business for the breeding and sale of shellfish. From one animal during reproduction we get about a hundred new individuals.
Achatina. giant African land snails
The natural habitat of Achatina is found in East Africa, but representatives of this species can also be found in many European countries. African achatines have gained popularity as pets for the terrarium, and they are also bred for food. In many countries with a warm climate, including Spain, they are serious pests of crops.
They live in places where it is warm enough, damp and have constant access to food. They feel ideal in a tropical climate.
African snails can live at home, for them it is not difficult to create an optimal local climate in the terrarium.
The size depends on the species. Achatina is the largest snail in the world, its shell grows up to 200 mm, and weight can be 400-500 grams. At home, slugs also reach large sizes. adult individuals can have a shell length of 70 to 170 mm and a width of 30 to 80 mm.
Achatina care at home
These mollusks prefer warm, humid areas, especially places around ponds. Terrarium
must maintain a temperature of 20-30 ° C and humidity of about 80-95% (specific parameters depend on the subspecies). For more demanding types, a device for additional heating is required, for example, heating elements located on the outside of the terrarium.
The activity of the mollusk depends on the ambient temperature, sunlight and humidity. In the cold season, they are active around the clock. In the hot season, they are active mainly at night or during rain.
They can become inactive for many reasons: inadequate humidity, low temperature, and illness. Such Achatina is closed in a shell with a limestone cap.
The average life span of an animal is 3 to 5 years, but there are individuals that live for 9 years.
How to care for snails at home? Their nutrition should be taken very seriously so that they receive all the elements necessary for their vital functions. This phytophage feeds on various species of plants. Achatina feels the taste of food and its diet should be varied.
What do snails eat at home?
They use fragments of various plants, as well as special additives:
- vegetables: cucumbers, tomatoes, carrots, celery and parsley, zucchini and zucchini;
- fruits and berries: apples, pears, plums, bananas, blackberries, raspberries, grapes and strawberries;
- watermelon, melon;
- you can give her an extra boiled egg;
- soaked food for dogs and cats (such additives are used once a week, not more often);
- the dry mix should consist of oatmeal, dry granular food for rodents, dry food in the form of flakes for fish, skimmed milk powder, wheat bran;
- sometimes they eat cookies for kids and baby rice porridge.
All feed should be fresh. without rot and mold, they must be thoroughly washed. Considering the fact that fruits and vegetables are often sprayed with anti-snail products when grown, it is best to peel them before serving your pet.
For ease of cleaning the terrarium, food is best placed in a bowl. Some people also give pets a cup of water.
Achatina must be carefully looked after.
The lack of minerals in snails causes characteristic behavior associated with curettage and eating the upper layer of the shells of other animals. Subsequently, such a disturbed and weakened part may burst, and as a result pathogens or internal organs protrude through the cracks. In laying eggs, the demand for minerals is even greater.
What foods are undesirable to give
Do not give Achatin parts of plants such as:
- salad, spinach;
- onion and garlic;
- cabbage, cauliflower, broccoli. because of the oxalates contained in them, which, by binding calcium, can disrupt the functioning of the body, which leads to slow growth and cracking of the shell;
- citrus fruits (oranges, kiwi, grapefruit).
How to properly contain snails at home. arranging a terrarium
The terrarium should allow the slug to move freely and dig in the substrate. Its height should not exceed 40 cm, as young land animals can crawl along the upper part of the terrarium and sometimes fall.
The lid of the terrarium should be well fixed due to the fact that, thanks to the surprisingly high strength of the muscles, it can be moved by the cochlea. In the terrarium, you should not use any elements of copper, since this metal in combination with mucus reacts.
Terrarium cannot stand in direct sunlight. You will not need additional lighting, only diffused daylight will be enough. If, for aesthetic reasons, you decide to add light, then this should be a low-energy fluorescent lamp, separated from the rest of the terrarium, so that Achatina can not get on its surface. An alternative would be lighting located outside the terrarium.
One go two domestic snails?
These animals have sexual dimorphism, that is, there is no difference between the sexes. This means that each individual is both a boy and a girl. If you get two Achatina, sooner or later they will both lay their eggs. The number of eggs depends on the species. from tens to hundreds of pieces from one individual. The incubation period and breeding of young animals does not cause difficulties, but you must decide how you will keep so many pets later.
Additional facts about Achatina:
If you decide to have an unusual pet. go for it! Perhaps snail breeding will become your favorite hobby for many years to come.