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The Snail Lover's Society



  • CloggieCloggie Posts: 1,455
    Fran IOM says:

    Have collected them in a bucket while gardening before deciding what to do with them and on going back to find the majority had escaped so they are pretty swift and cunning into the bargain. They seem to know when they are in a place they shouldn't be. 

    See original post

     Yeah, if it has no vegetation, they shouldn't be there he he image

  • Fran IOMFran IOM Posts: 2,306

    Did forget to feed them!  image

  • As a non-member (disqualified see previous posts) I had stopped following this thread.    However I was having a bit of a clear out at home & found this very old tongue in cheek birthday card  so thought  your  members might like to see it


    Now where is that hunting rifle?

    sorry image

    AB Still learning

  • pbffpbff Posts: 433

    Love the picture Iain, thank you for posting it! image

    You are most welcome to join us and become a SLS member, but if the thought does not appeal, then I hope you'll keep following our thread anyway - at least you can have a laugh at our expense! image

    Maybe we'll even eventually bring you round to our point of view and you could become the UK's leading Snail and Slug Conservationist? Just an idea...image

    All the best


    Last edited: 10 January 2018 08:48:52

  • pbffpbff Posts: 433

    Just came across a Tweet from Hayley Jones, entomologist at the Royal Horticultural Society, asking if anyone wants to do "a sluggy PhD".

    Here is the link she provides for further information: 

    Do have a read - it's very interesting.

    The citizen science project, monitoring garden gastropods, sounds right up our street!

  • I should point out that the image is copyright to Simon Drew of Dartmouth Devon. "Simon Drew is an English illustrator and cartoonist, noted for his quirky punning captions, often featuring animals which he draws in a fine pen-and-ink style"

    It is very kind of you both to re-offer membership but I think my past crimes (as admitted previously) probably disqualify me. However my SIL & a granddaughter both love snails & get very upset with me if I practice my dark arts in their garden (which is why their raised veg beds rarely produce anything).  Perhaps I can be a follower by proxy.

    Regards Iain

    AB Still learning

  • pbffpbff Posts: 433

    Iain - I am sure that you can be follower by proxy image

    I tweeted Dr Hayley Jones about the snail project and she said that the citizen science part will be likely to start in the autumn, although they have to find a PhD student and get approval from IAPETUS before the project can be launched, so no guarantees that it will go ahead yet. Fingers crossed that it will!

    Another interesting thing that I found out about is 'Snailspace Brighton & Hove'

    According to the website it says: 

    "As the leaves turn golden in Autumn 2018 Snailspace Brighton & Hove will be hitting the streets.

    The Snail sculptures will be popping up throughout the city, decorated by local artists and community groups, and sponsored by local businesses and individuals.

    We're asking you to #BeMoreSnail and take the slow road around our city. Wander wherever the urge takes you. Wonder at the unique sculptures - enjoy and share experiences with friends old and new.

    The fantastic 'Snailway' of sculptures is brought to you by Martlets Hospice, in partnership with Wild in Art, to raise funds for their life changing hospice care".

    There is the option to Sponsor a Snail, Become A Snail Artist ("come out of your shell and get involved with Snailspace") or Join the Junior Snailway.

    See and

    for more information.

  • pbffpbff Posts: 433

    Lucky you Philippa - it's thick of fog here and all damp, cold and miserable.

    Nice weather for snails and slugs though I suppose...

    Last edited: 10 January 2018 14:48:50

  • pbffpbff Posts: 433

    Hi all,

    Today's topic is ... snail slime!

    What is snail slime?

    Slime is an external bodily secretion of mucus produced by gastropods, functioning as a a protective layer for the skin.

    Mucus is produced by glands of a snail's foot, specifically a large gland located below the mouth.

    The foot mucus has some of the qualities of an adhesive and some of the qualities of a lubricant, allowing land gastropods to crawl up vertical surfaces without falling off.

    As well as being a crawling-aid, slime also allows a resting snail to passively adhere to a surface, making a temporary sealing structure called the epiphragm.

    The mucus is also used to deter predators, to recognise other snails and to follow a trail to a known destination.

    A snail releases different kinds of mucus depending upon the way it is stimulated. If a snail is disturbed continuously or violently, it will release clear, foamy secretions.

    Snail slime contains approximately 91-98% water, depending upon the species, combined with a small proportion of high molecular weight glycoproteins.

    Human uses for snail slime

    Snail slime was traditionally used from Ancient Greek times to the Middle Ages as a remedy against a variety of ailments.

    For example, a person suffering from gastrointestinal ulcers would have snails placed upon their upper chest and the slime would be spread around their rib cage. 

    (Perhaps Patricia Highsmith was trying out this ancient remedy when keeping snails in her bra! image)

    The Ancient Greeks are said to have used an ointment made from crushed snails to reduce skin inflammation.

    Today, snail slime is used in the cosmetics industry.

    The slime is claimed to stimulate the formation of collagen, elastin and dermal components that repair the signs of photoaging and is also claimed to minimise the damage generated by free radicals that are responsible for premature skin ageing.

    It is believed to reduce inflammation and redness, stimulate skin regeneration, moisturise the skin, fade dark spots and improve acne.

    The slime is usually commercially obtained from Helix aspersa, which produces a secretion rich in proteins of high and low molecular weight, hyaluronic acid and antioxidants.

    In 2013, inspired by treatments in E. Asia, anyone wanting a face as youthful and as beautiful as that of a snail could pay to have snails crawl over their face at a spa in Northamptonshire...

    Other salons offer facials where the skin is pricked with tiny needles before a serum containing snail secretions is applied.

    Snail Farming

    Reports suggest that snail farming, or heliciculture, in Italy has increased by more than 325% over two decades, with some 44,000 tonnes of snails produced every year, an industry now worth £180 million, according to agricultural association Coldiretti.

    Coldiretti's president Roberto Moncalvo said, "We are seeing record numbers of new avante-garde snail-production businesses".

    More than 4,000 producers are farming snails in Italy, mostly raising Helix aspersa.

    Heliciculture involves raising snails for human use - their flesh as edible escargot, their eggs as gourmet caviar (a 50g pack of this caviar can cost as much as £86, apparently) and their slime for cosmetics and pharmaceuticals.

    In early 2017, Simone Sampo, president of Italy's National Heliciculture Association, told The Telegraph, "In the last 10 months alone, we've seen a 46% increase in snail slime, due to the demand from the cosmetics industry."

    Last edited: 13 January 2018 14:10:43

  • pbffpbff Posts: 433


    Traditionally, snails were dunked in water containing salt, vinegar or other chemicals to make them secrete slime, but nowadays, Italian snail-breeders have developed more natural methods of slime extraction.

    Slime quality depends heavily on environmental conditions and breeders regulate what the snails eat, how they are kept and how the slime is extracted, so that products can be certified in certain ways.

    Italy recently patented a new machine, called the Muller One, which extracts snail slime by immersing the snails in a special steam bath.

    "It is essentially a spa for snails," said Mr Sampo. "We raise them naturally, feed them only vegetable matter and then extract the slime with water that contains ozone, which kills all the bacteria. The snails are not harmed."


    The Muller One 


    Snails in the Muller One


    The slime extraction process in the Muller One


    A snail slime cosmetic product

    Last edited: 13 January 2018 14:21:43

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