Posts Tagged giant panda snail

Giant Panda Snails are on the move

ImageHave you ever walked through the rainforest and discovered a large empty snail shell? Well these shells belong to Hedleyella falconeri or the Giant Panda Snail. They are not called giant panda snails becasue they are black and white, it is becasue of their enormous size, about the size of a tennis ball. We usually see them on our Night Vision Walk any time between February and June, but these damp conditions have certainly brought them out of their shells (sorry).

When people see them for the first time they simply can not believe the size. So impressive are they, people often say they are the best thing they’ve seen that night, despite also seeing pademelon, bandicoots, owls.

Hedleyella falconeri are a nocturnal land snail, in fact Australia’s biggest land snail. Which can be found in sub-tropical rainforest where it forages in the leaf litter of the forest floor. Like other snails it is more active during and after rain to prevent water loss from its soft body. This species will shelter under tree roots and logs but also within the leaf litter in forest clearing. Giant Panda Snails are hermaphroditic, meaning that individuals possess both sperm and eggs.

Source Australian Museum 

If you want to see these guys/girls in action, get out into the rainforest at night. But be careful, as they do react to torch light, you are best to observe them with night vision technology.

Giant Panda Snails are hermaphroditic, meaning that individuals possess both sperm and eggs. Mating occurs over night whereby the two snails exchange sperm to fertilise each others eggs. Fifteen to 20 cream coloured eggs are laid over a period of a few days in a shallow burrow (about 50mm deep) and are left covered with leaf litter. These nest sites have been recorded in open areas, not under logs or amongst tree roots. These eggs are relatively large in size for snails, at around 18mm long and 2g in weight, they are truly giant. – See more at: http://australianmuseum.net.au/Giant-Panda-Snail#sthash.GW6mwgga.dpuf
sub-tropical rainforest where it forages in the leaf litter of the forest floor. Like other snails it is more active during and after rain to prevent water loss from its soft body. This species will shelter under tree roots and logs but also within the leaf litter in forest clearing – See more at: http://australianmuseum.net.au/Giant-Panda-Snail#sthash.GW6mwgga.dpuf
sub-tropical rainforest where it forages in the leaf litter of the forest floor. Like other snails it is more active during and after rain to prevent water loss from its soft body. This species will shelter under tree roots and logs but also within the leaf litter in forest clearing – See more at: http://australianmuseum.net.au/Giant-Panda-Snail#sthash.GW6mwgga.dpuf
Hedleyella
Species:
falconeri
Genus:
Hedleyella
Species:
falconeri
Genus:
Hedleyella

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