15 Rare Giant Land Snails That Can Grow As Big As A Person’s FIST And Cause Rare Form Of Meningitis Caught At Houston Airport
- 15 giant land snails have been trapped at a Houston airport, officials said
- The snails, 0.25 pounds of dried beef and fresh leaves were seized at George Bush Intercontinental Airport
- They were seized by US Customs and Border Protection and eventually turned over to the US Department of Agriculture
- They were first spotted in southern Florida in the 1960s and it took almost 10 years and $1 million to get rid of them
- The snails can grow to almost 20 cm in length and 5 cm in diameter
- They carry a parasitic nematode that can cause bacterial meningitis in humans
- These snails reproduce quickly and produce about 1200 eggs in one year
Fifteen live giant land snails that can grow to the size of a person’s fist and cause a rare form of meningitis in humans have been trapped at a Houston airport, officials said.
The snails, which were contained in three zip-lock plastic bags along with a quarter pound of beef and fresh leaves, were seized at George Bush Intercontinental Airport.
They were turned over to U.S. Customs and Border Protection, which: announced the disappearance on Tuesday.
They were taken from the luggage of a Nigerian woman, who initially said she only had dried beef, but later added that she also had the snails.
The snails were eventually turned over to the United States Department of Agriculture, which identified the snails, also known as Banana Rasp Snails.
15 giant land snails that can wreak havoc on the environment and cause meningitis in humans have been trapped at a Houston airport, officials said
The snails, 0.25 pounds of dried beef and fresh leaves were seized at George Bush Intercontinental Airport
The snails were seized from the luggage of a Nigerian woman, who initially said she only had dried beef, but eventually confessed that she also had the snails, known as Banana Rasp Snails.
“Our agricultural specialists remain vigilant in protecting the U.S. from foreign animal and plant diseases that could threaten U.S. crop production and the livestock industry or be transmitted to humans,” Houston CBP Port Director Shawn Polley said in a statement. pronunciation.
According to the USDA’s website, land snails were first spotted in southern Florida in the 1960s and it took nearly 10 years and $1 million to rid the area of them.
“Giant African Snail (Lissachatina fulica or GAS) is one of the most damaging snails in the world because it eats at least 500 species of plants and can cause structural damage to plaster and stucco structures,” the USDA said.
‘This snail can also carry a parasitic nematode that can lead to meningitis in humans. One of the most harmful snails in the world. GAS reproduces quickly and produces about 1200 eggs in one year.’
These snails can grow to nearly 8 inches (20 cm) in length and 5 inches in diameter, “about the size of an average adult fist,” according to the USDA.
They can grow to nearly 8 inches (20 cm) long and 2 inches (5 cm) in diameter, “about the size of an average adult fist,” the USDA added.
‘Each snail contains both female and male reproductive organs. After a single mating, each snail can produce 100 to 500 eggs. These snails can reproduce multiple times without mating again. They can lay eggs every 2 to 3 months.’
Not only are the giant land snails considered an environmental threat, feeding on peanuts, beans, and even paint and stucco on houses, they pose a dangerous threat to humans, causing meningitis due to the fact that they carry a parasitic nematode.
Parasitic meningitis is less common than viral or bacterial meningitis but can affect the brain and nervous system, causing headaches, stiff neck, vomiting and sometimes death, according to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention.
This isn’t the first time giant land snails have been found in Houston — in 2013, a woman saw this type of snail in the backyard of her Houston home, according to Click2Houston.
She later alerted authorities who had contacted researchers at Sam Houston State University.