A grandmother, taking her 3 year-old grandson for a walk in the garden could not find a common garden snail. She wanted to show him one, how they move, where they live, how they eat.
She mentioned this to SingaporeforKids. And it happened that the very next day, we saw a garden snail and its baby (or maybe we noticed them because of the earlier conversation) having a relaxed breakfast, just after the morning rain. Out came the iphone.
For those – children and adults – who may want to know how (and what) a snail eats, SFK went online, googled and came up with a few facts :
- Most land snails eat plants and vegetation. They also eat algae and decaying vegetation and are an important part of the food web.
- A garden snail has thousands of tiny teeth, located on a ribbon-like tongue and they work like a file to rip food to bits. Snails can also gnaw through limestone – they eat the little bits of chalk in the rock as they need it for their shells.
- Most terrestrial snails are herbivorous, but others are omnivorous and some even carnivorous. Each species has different eating habits, depending on their size, age, habitat and individual nutritional requirements. You will likely find snails around your garden as this offers them plenty of fresh plants and leaves to eat.
- The herbivorous snails devour a wide variety of live plant parts: leaves, stems, plant crops, bark, and fruits. Many consume fungi and mushrooms, and others may occasionally add algae, although these are an important food for freshwater snails.