The Achatina snail belongs to the mollusk Archachatinidae family, which includes representatives of several genera. Achatina (Achatina) are similar to their relatives Archachatina, but they have a more pointed crown of the shell. Achatina giant prolific, it can bring 100-600 eggs at a time, which have a rounded shape and a white shell.
African Achatina is one of the largest land mollusks on the planet. They have large shells with a yellow-brown shade and a dark pattern. The body is brown or dark, soft and in tubercles. The largest specimen had a weight of up to 600 grams, and the shell length was almost 40 cm.
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What you need to keep a snail?
The best “house” where Achatina snails will get care is a glass aquarium or aquaterrarium. For one adult snail, choose the maximum free tank. To contain several pets at once, you need a capacity of 20 liters 3. In the terrarium should be a cover with holes for air circulation. Holes should not be wide so that the animal does not run away.
Maintaining a large snail at home is impossible without a soil substrate. Achatina likes to sleep during the day, burrowing into the layer of soil. There is an opinion that floral land with peat content will be useful. But the land with a high content of peat creates life in an acidic environment, which is harmful to animals. The primer coating needs to be moistened with water from a spray bottle once a day, otherwise the snails themselves will begin to secrete large amounts of mucus.
As a result, the mollusks will be smeared in the dirt and pollute the glass. It is not necessary to use as a substrate clay or fat loams, as well as pieces of wooden bark in a rotten form. The optimal solution is to place loose sand on the bottom of the aquarium instead of the ground with peat. Sometimes it is exchanged for hazelnuts, walnuts. But the tender skin of mollusks may be injured. A good option for bedding. coconut substrate.
Domestic snails need to be kept in clean conditions. The soil should be cleaned once a week, and completely replaced with a terrarium cleaning. once every 3-12 months. But the more often you take care of a pet’s house, the better. Products of vital activity, in spite of the absence of odor, will still begin to emit charms, and the walls of the tank will be covered with mucus of crawling snails.
In conditions of full-fledged lighting, the snails feel comfortable. But they do not require artificial light sources. Alternating the day-night mode is enough. Homemade clams are active at night and sleep during the day. If you find it necessary to install lighting in order to better see the animals, the lighting should be external.
Watch the video, which tells how to contain Achatina snails.
At home, the temperature should be constant. It is necessary that the air temperature was comfortable for tropical African snails. Temperature from 22 to 28 o C will be the most optimal. It is not recommended to install an aquaterrarium near a room battery, in places of direct sunlight, so as not to create a differential temperature.
As for accessories, you can put moss, samples of clay ceramics in a container with soil. It is possible to plant plants in the ground, then those that would not allow over-wetting of the substrate. It is better to choose species that are covered with small villi. Snails tend to eat plants, so they will have to be transplanted from time to time. The best option is a fern or ivy.
Feeding. Snail Ahatin breeding
Feeding should occur once a day for young snails, and once a few days for mature ones. African snails eat plant food. They love lettuce, dandelion, grapes, cucumbers, apples. Also eat at home spinach, corn, zucchini, mango, avocado, bananas, melon. However, the snail may eat some of the listed products, and some may refuse at all. You can not often give oranges or grapes, watermelon with stones. Some pets eat carrots and cabbage. A useful carbohydrate food for shellfish will be oatmeal flakes, bran.
Do snails need water? Despite the constant moistening of the soil, a separate container with water should be in the aquarium. While the snail is small, the tank should not be deep so that the pet does not drown. Water is useful for normalizing mucus production. Some snails allow you to pull yourself together and bathe in a bath with warm water. They love water and are not afraid of it.
In captivity, Achatina easily reproduces from the age of 6 months. Some copies come to play later. Incubation lasts 1-2 months. If the soil thickness is low, then they will refuse to breed. For laying, a ground depth of 7 cm is needed, where the snail could lay eggs. Do not be surprised if your pet breeds throughout the year. From the age of one year, spermatozoa form in the mollusk, later. the egg cells. The African snail is a hermaphrodite, although two snails can also interbreed among themselves. If you have several pets, it is better to plant them in different aquariums.
See how Achatina breed.
It happens that the snail brings a "surprise": more than 100 eggs, which have nowhere to go. Compromise and humane decision. to give the fry for free. There were cases of deliverance from the masonry, when the owner attributed it to nature or to the street in winter. But a backlash can occur. in nature Achatina are pests. In some countries it is forbidden to maintain them at home, and even less diluted.
Snails, which are imported from tropical regions, are often carriers of parasites. It is advisable to acquire pets who are bred at home. It is almost impossible to get infected by such animals if you wash your hands with soap and water after each contact with them. Achatina, crawling on the wall or lid of the tank, can fall, even split off a piece of shell. When such a case has occurred, no need to despair, the pet will not die. Broken the edges of the shell is better to treat with an antiseptic. The soft body will be visible, but after a few days healing will be visible. the edges of the broken shell will begin to blunt, closing the cleavage. The main thing is that the pet does not get an infection.
If you have a few snails, you can occasionally notice how they scrape the shells of each other, due to which pits are formed. This bad habit is surmountable if it is not a harmful but “tasteless” remedy to lubricate the sink. Check with the attending veterinarian in this case so as not to risk it.
There are owners who prefer to often take snails in their hands, digging up for this ground during the day. First, at this time of day, pets prefer to sleep rather than receive stress. Secondly, it is possible to damage the snail. The snail is active in the evening, then it will gladly go into the hands. It is not recommended to take the snail for the last spiral of the shell, the damaged part of the body. In order to take a mollusk correctly, it is necessary to wet its leg with water, and place a finger under it, and hold the shell with the second hand.
Keeping giant Achatina at home is a great opportunity to please yourself. These animals are unpretentious, not afraid of human hands. If you are going on a trip, you can leave them alone for a few days. During the long trip of the host, the snails may hibernate, hiding in the sink, and clog it. This time they will live at the expense of the resources of the body, but after waking up they will be very hungry. Wake up after the "shower" with warm water. Anabiosis (hibernation) also occurs when the snail is too cold or there is a lot of moisture in the aquarium, imitating the rainy season.