Wednesday, August 10, 2022

Giant snails that can carry parasites that cause meningitis in humans found in Florida

A Florida district is under quarantine after giant snails that can carry parasites “known to cause meningitis in humans”.

Pasco County officials urged the public to report snail sightings and issued a wanted poster.

Billed as “one of the most harmful snails in the world,” the giant African land snail can pose a serious health risk and is illegal in the US without a permit.

Nonetheless, Pasco County officials say gastropods with one or more shells have been observed and efforts are on to control the problem.

“These snails can be devastating to Florida agriculture and natural areas because they cause widespread damage to tropical and subtropical environments,” the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (FDACS) read the warning.

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“Snails also pose a serious health risk to humans, carrying the parasite rat lungworm, which is known to cause meningitis in humans.”

A quarantine is in place in the county, banning the movement of snails, “plants, plant parts, plants in soil, soil, yard waste, debris, manure or building material” out of the area without approval.

Additionally, officials are using snail bait to capture or kill slippery pests.

This is not the first time Florida has been hit by an outbreak of snails either,

Growing to eight inches tall, snails are native to East Africa, but are popular with some exotic pet owners.

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Despite being famously slow, they can produce up to 2,500 eggs per year making populations difficult to control.

Officials say it could take up to three years to eliminate the snail population in Pasco County.

Christina Chitti, a public information director at the FDACS, told Nation World News that the new snails likely originated from the illegal pet trade.

“The goal is to eradicate” the snails, said Ms. Chitti. “It’s a comprehensive and comprehensive process.”

Nation World News Desk
Nation World News Deskhttps://nationworldnews.com
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