Types of Snails Found on Earth

Among all of the natural animals that have served as blessings to the human race, snail cannot be swayed behind even with the many types of snails found on earth. Unarguably, snails have considerable human relevance as much as they have cultural significance which include as food, as pests, and as vectors of disease, lethargy, and their shells are used as decorative objects and are incorporated into jewelry. They are also known figuratively used in speech to mean sloth.

Apart from some of the usefulness listed above, snail farming can also be a very lucrative business anywhere in the world.

Types of snails found on earth do not just include land snails alone. There are numerous species of sea snails and freshwater snails. Snail are termed shelled gastropod. Gastropods that naturally lack a shell, or have only an internal shell, are mostly called slugs, and land snails that have only a very small shell.

On feeding, snails eating habits vary widely, with some being generalists and some being specialist feeders. Snails feed at night. They feed primarily on decaying organic matter. Their diet also includes fungi, lichens, green foliage, worms, centipedes, insects, animal feces, carrion, and other slugs. Some snails feed on other snails too.

On the flip side, this animal is recorded to be associated with parasitic diseases which can be transmitted to humans such as:

  • Schistosomiasis
  • Angiostrongyliasis
  • Fasciolopsiasis
  • Opisthorchiasis
  • Fascioliasis
  • Paragonimiasis
  • Clonorchiasis

Types of Snails Found on Earth

This content will be introducing you to the types of snails found on earth specifically in their various habitats. The aim is to also enlighten you about some of the things that they do different from others of the same species.

White Lipped Snail

White lipped snails are medium-sized terrestrial snails. A distinguishing feature they possess is a white band at the top opening of their shells. On their shells, you’ll see around five brown bands. White lipped snails come in various colors; however, the most common ones have yellowish or pinkish hues.

These snails are hermaphrodites and typically live in damp habitats. The white lipped snail eats hogweed, nettles, and ragwort.

Channeled Apple Snails

Also known as the golden apple snail, this snail has a bold yellow shell that makes it stand out. The golden apple snail is native to South America; however, you can also find it in various parts of the world. Since they feed on rice, especially in the Southeast part of Asia, many consider them pests. Golden apple snails are highly adaptable to their environment. They also reproduce easily.

Violet Sea Snails

Also known as the bubble raft snail, this snail stands out with its beautiful shell. Its shell consists of tints and tones of light and dark purple. These snails exist in various parts of the world, often in warm water bodies. They often move in large groups and reside at the water’s surface.

They are about 1.6 inches long. The violet sea snail eats various types of jellyfish. Early in their lives, they exist as males. As they grow, they transition into females.

Mystery Snails

Mystery snails are a collective of aquarium snails that many people often keep with their pet fish. These aquarium snails come in many forms and colors and often grow to about 3 inches.

They mainly eat decaying plants as opposed to some snails that eat healthy plants. Not only are they easy to care for, but they also help to keep fish tanks clean by clearing out algae. They also eat greens like kale and spinach. Within the mystery snail species, you’ll commonly find the gold Inca snail.

Rabbit Snails

Rabbit snails are some of the most interesting freshwater snails that exist. Like mystery snails, they help to clean out tanks by feeding on algae. A common characteristic that rabbit snails have is their long shell.

You’ll find snails within his group with varying colors, from black to red. Similar to rabbits’ long ears, these snails have dropping antennae. They also have distinct long faces that separate them from the regular snail appearance. They grow to about 3 inches long.

Common Whelk

The common whelk is a large snail. Its shell can go up to 3.9 inches high and 2.4 inches wide. Its natural habitat is around coastal areas, and it enjoys staying in sandy seabeds.

This snail’s conical shell comes in various colors. Some can be white while others are yellow or red-brown. Their shells also have wavy lines that form a pattern. As carnivorous animals, common whelks often eat worms, crustaceans, and mollusks.

Geography Cones

Geography cone or conus geographus is the most venomous snail and a part of the predatory snail species. It is the most deadly of the hundreds of cone snail species, with sizes ranging from 4 to 6 inches long. They have white and brown shells that many shell collectors appreciate.

Their venom contains different toxins that can immediately paralyze their fish prey. They are also quite dangerous to humans. According to National Geographic, there is no antivenin for cone snail stings. Caretakers often have to care for the victims till the venom wears off.

Common Periwinkle

Common periwinkles are small marine snails. Their shells have an oval-looking shape with spiral lines and pointed ends. Their shell colors vary from grey to grey-brown hues. In terms of size, common periwinkles can grow up to around an inch long. You’ll often find them along shorelines or in-between rocks.

These snails can survive on land for several days, and they stay moist by closing their shells. Although small, they are adaptable and can survive in harsh conditions. They often feed on algae.

Milk Snails

Also known as the Spanish snail, the milk snail is a large type of snail. These terrestrial snails have white or light brown-looking shells with dark textured stripes. These are also edible snails that people include in their diets.

The milk snail is prominent in Europe; however, you’ll also find it in parts of Northern Africa. This type of snail typically feeds on green vegetables, including celery, lettuce, and cabbage.


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