Friday, September 28, 2012

Spidey Snail

It was on that evening on the road by the edge of a rainforest, I was trying my luck to look for the Asian Paradise Flycatcher (Terpsiphone paradisi) to photograph. Somehow, something caught my attention. It was just a small whitish leaf-like about two centimeters suspending in the air and it was moving a little. Oh well... just a leaf, probably. Or maybe it could be a spider??? Let's check it out.

As I got closer, I was very amazed to see this.

  
Click on for a closer look.

This is not the best shot... but can you see the strand of mucus?

What I was seeing for my first time was this snail climbing downwards by using its own mucus which looks like a thread made by a spider. As I was attempting to take a closer shot of this delicate creature, it somehow landed on my camera lens. And the strand of mucus stopped at about less than 1 meter above the ground. Gee... I think I "did" it again...sorry snail for ruining your journey. Anyway, I gave it a free ride down by placing it on the ground. I hope it is happy on that spot.

Hey JK of SiputKuning Journal, this post is specially for you! Also require your expertise to tell us more about this wonderful snail. Cheers, mate!

6 comments:

  1. JK will know more, but I've seen a similar thing here with a helicarionid snail descending on a mucus thread from the roof gutter. (I don't know what the snail was doing up there. I thought it impolite to ask.) By the time I had changed the camera lens to something suitable, the snail had disappeared. It's great to see these photos.

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    Replies
    1. Thanks, Snail. I wonder how much mucus do each snail generate or how much mucus each snail stores?

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  2. That's really cool! And nice pics! ;-)
    I've also seen a hammerhead worm to that.

    M

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    Replies
    1. Thanks, M. A hammerhead worm do that? Now, that's another cool stuffs. Got pics?

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  3. Now That's an interesting behaviour! Thanks for sharing! :)

    I have personally not seen this before but I think this is similar to what's reported by Breue, a well-known malacologist in his blog: http://www.ashbreure.nl/snailblog/files/0ec582f9f2255de2de9fc6cc4d902af6-266.html

    But of course, that was suspected to be a spider's job.

    There is another seperate report: http://amyinmalawi.wordpress.com/2009/03/02/ntchisi-forest-lodge/

    But I haven't found any explanation for this yet. Perhaps it's trying to get a quick ride down to the ground? Might need to consult more experts! I'm still learning on-the-go! :)

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    Replies
    1. Interesting about spiderlings in shells from ashbreure blogsite!
      Like you said, this may be a technique a land snail descending from a high point so it doesn't have a crash landing. Land snails travel up on trees to feed and this may be the fastest way to descend.

      Thanks for the link, JK!

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