Snails as a resource?

Discussion in 'Breeding, Raising, Feeding and Caring for Animals' started by orion, Aug 30, 2013.

  1. orion

    orion Junior Member

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    Hi all,

    I have a bit of a duck deficiency at my place, therefore I trying to think laterally about what to do with the abundance of garden snails...apart from getting ducks!

    Has anyone utilised snails as a resource to break down green waste, dog poo (another abundant resource at my place) etc?

    I'm not really interested in raising them for human consumption.

    cheers,

    Ryan.
     
  2. annette

    annette Junior Member

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    Hi Ryan

    I watched a river cottage episode ages ago about Hugh's problem with his snails. They were eating everything and when he put the ducks in there, the ducks ate everything including all the veges he had planted. He then tried to cook them up as some sort of meal, which was a disaster.

    I know lots of lizards eat snails. I have lots of blue tongues and water dragons and pythons and don't have any problem with snails. Maybe you could encourage some of those to see if that helps.
     
  3. Grahame

    Grahame Senior Member

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    It is also worth encouraging the frogs. They seem to do a bit of work involving snails and slugs. Our frogs are very chirpy and enthusiastic at the moment.

    I have noticed a lot of young snails and slugs this year. I did a bit of work looking for snails eggs a few months ago, but I can see a lot still survived. I am being as vigilant as I can in collecting them up and keeping the 'weeds' down. This seems to be helping. Luckily the chickens have developed a liking for them too! so I feed the ones I collect to them regularly.

    It's worth having a lot of preferred hiding spots for the snails placed around the garden and collecting them regularly. Upturned pots, cardboard, things like that.
     
  4. orion

    orion Junior Member

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    Thanks! I would really love to find what lizards are native to my local area of Tarneit (a newly built up area in the Western Suburbs of Melbourne)...come to think of it I haven't seen a single skink around here! It could be that they have been cleared when the houses went up. I have looked and looked (online) but I can't seem to find any relevant info regarding lizards native to the area. Is it simply a case of 'Field of Dreams', "If you build it they will come". I have plenty of rock and other suitable habitat in my front yard but still not a skink in sight!
    There are plenty of frogs so that may be an option to get rid of the snails. However, is there anything I can put the snails to work on? I'm exploring the green waste option as even though they move slow, we have all seen that they are capable of decimating a crop overnight.

    Ryan
     
  5. annette

    annette Junior Member

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    Hi Ryan

    Well they do break down green matter etc so maybe you could try them in a compost pile or something with fine mesh over the top?
     
  6. orion

    orion Junior Member

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    I think I have to do a bit of research into their breeding cycle in case I flood my veg patch with snail eggs.
     
  7. songbird

    songbird Senior Member

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    some examples of slug/snail controls:

    piling snail food to encourage egg laying and then turning the food so that the snail eggs are exposed to predators.

    encouraging snakes which can eat a lot of slugs (we don't see to many snails or slugs here as we have plenty of rock piles for snakes - we are lucky to only have one poisonous snake in this area and it is rare).

    board flipping: putting down boards and letting the slugs gather underneath them in the night and then in the morning going out and flipping the boards over to expose them to further mayhem.

    training native birds to eat snails by breaking a few and leaving them on the surface in plain sight. birds may peck at them and then eventually figure out that fresh is best. :)
     

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