Home > Animals > Invertebrates > Snails and slugs

Snails and slugs   (Gastropoda)
Category: Invertebrates



“Snail” is a common name applied to most members of the class “Gastropoda” that have a coiled shell that is big enough for the animal to recoil into completely – this can include a vast number (thousands) of species of land snails, freshwater snails, and marine snails. Snail-like creatures that lack a shell or have only a small shell that they cannot retract into are known as slugs and semi-slugs, respectively. Although land snails are the most familiar to most people, marine snails constitute the majority of snail species and display much greater diversity. Slugs and snails, with their appetite for tender greens, can be agricultural pests, but some snail species are a highly valued food source and are farmed as a nutritious and even gourmet food source.



Data & Facts

Scientific Classification
Kingdom - Animalia
Phylum - Mollusca
Class - Gastropoda

Did you know?
Interesting Animal Facts

Cephalopods: Masterminds of the Ocean.

Octopi, cuttlefish, and squids - all cephalopods - have been observed engaging in amazing feats of intelligence (perhaps unsurprising, as cuttlefish and octopuses have the highest brain-to-body mass of all invertebrates). Their suction-cup covered arms are dexterous, and octopuses have been observed putting them to use throwing rocks, opening screw-top jars, even picking up and gathering coconut shells to build fortresses for themselves. Squids, for their part, have been observed hunting cooperatively and are able to communicate with one another via color changes, patterns, and flashing to one another - sometimes using different sides of their bodies to broadcast different signals to multiple squids! Just how smart are they? As they are typically elusive and so very different from humans, we aren’t sure yet - but we do know the question is not “Are they are intelligent?” but “How intelligent are they?”

Learn more >>


NAIA - National Animal Interest Alliance Discover Animals is a web-based educational resource offered by the NAIA
To learn more about the NAIA or about other NAIA programs, visit us at www.NAIAOnline.org
if you would like to help, join or support the NAIA or any of its programs please click here >>