The Giant African Snail has been in the news lately as thousands of these things have invaded the New Port Richey area. According to FDACS, “The giant African land snail (GALS) is one of the most damaging snails in the world and consumes at least 500 different types of plants. These snails could be devastating to Florida agriculture and natural areas as they cause extensive damage to tropical and subtropical environments. The snails also pose a serious health risk to humans by carrying the parasite rat lungworm, known to cause meningitis in humans.”
So it’s not just plants, these things will eat the stucco right off your house. And grabbing one with your hands is a band idea, as they can cause meningitis. They’re so badly trying to control these things that they’ve set up a quarantine area around New Port Richey where “It is unlawful to move the giant African land snail or a regulated article, including but not limited to, plants, plants parts, plants in soil, soil, yard waste, debris, compost or building materials, within, through or from a quarantine area without a compliance agreement.” If you’re not familiar, New Port Richey is along the coast just north of the Clearwater/Tampa area. These things have not been reported in our area and it’d be nice to keep it that way. Stucco eating snails? I just paid 3 grand to have my house painted, no thanks.
The Giant African Snail isn’t the only animal trying to destroy Florida. Ranker took a look at some of the animals that hate us living in this tropical paradise, and they want us out.