Much fun and learning about Australia’s land snails was enjoyed at Gladstone Central SS in Science Week 2018 when the Snail Whisperer, Dr John and Lorelle visited for the day. This event was part of Queensland Museum’ s Future Makers Program.
Australian Land Snails Volume 2 covers 756 species in 39 families from an area that extends from western Queensland and New South Wales to Victoria and Tasmania, South Australia, Western Australia and the Northern Territory; several species from Christmas Island are also included. The field guide is dominated by the Camaenidae (480 species) which has radiated exuberantly in the semi-arid and arid areas of Australia. Contained in the guide are more than 2000 colour images plus descriptions, distribution maps, key localities and habitat and ecology notes. Most species are illustrated in colour for the first time. Thirty-five genera and five species are described as new.
This guide is targeted at both professional and semi-professional malacologists as well as students, amateur natural historians and those involved in land management. But whether it is used as a manual for study or as an identification handbook, this field guide should be an inspiration for those with an interest in the natural world.
Volume 2 is now in the Queensland Museum bookshop (RRP $99 including GST). Also available on-line.
Clockwise from the left: Amplirhagada osmondi, WA; Sinumelon pedasum, SA; Torrestrachia hartogi, Molena I.; Mesodontrachia fitzroyana, NT. Images: Vince Kessner .
The Snail Whisperer has just finished filming a Scope segment in the malacology lab at the Queensland Museum. The highlight of the segment is Fat Albert who is a Giant Panda Snail (Hedleyella falconeri) from Mt Tambourine. Fat Albert proved to be an upcoming movie star for the duration of the filming.
Another fantastic science experience organised by Dale and her team at the Moggill Catchment Group’s Kids Day at the Cottage last weekend. Our live snails did their work and intrigued children and adults alike. Fat Albert II, a large Giant Panda Snail was the highlight.
Note that the Snail Whisperer is holding not just Volume 1 but VOLUME 2!! It has finally arrived and will be released shortly. More on the radio and Channel 10 shortly.
Congratulations to the Snail Whisperer who is the winner of this award for 2018.The Queensland Natural History Award is presented annually by the Queensland Naturalists’ Club Inc. to give recognition to persons who have made outstanding contributions to natural history in Queensland. It has been awarded since 1992.
The award consists of a medallion featuring the Bunya Pine tree and is set in a polished block of Bunya Pine wood. The Bunya Pine Araucaria bidwillii is endemic to Queensland and is the symbol of the Club.
Come to this conference to hear The Snail Whisperer talk on snails of the Eyre Peninsula. If you are lucky, you can join him on a bioblitz walk where you can find the local snail fauna and learn more about snails.
Click here for conference registrations and more information.
From the Courier Mail 29 July, 2017. ‘Doctors may soon patch up cuts and wounds with a glue inspired by slug slime.’
Scientists have found that slug slime has the ability to stick to wet surfaces unlike most glues that require dry surfaces. Scientists have simulated the molecular structure of slug slime to create a glue that has in laboratory testing, successfully repaired a hole in a pig’s heart that was wet with blood.
Red-triangle Slug (Triboniophorus graeffei)
Sad news but not all bad. Book 2 was printed with errors and mixed pages so it’s back to the printers.
Looking good to arrive in October/November- just in time for Christmas presents.
‘Native snails [in NZ and Australia] don’t consume green vegetable matter, they live on decaying leaves, fungus, biofilm (microalgae growing on rocks and tree trunks). They use their little ribbon of teeth, their radula, to scrape food. It’s actually slugs who are responsible for most of the damage to home gardens, but they don’t leave incriminating shells,’ Stanisic says.