SnailBlitz 2023 is here! Send us your snail and slug photos between February 1, 2023 to March 31, 2023. NHM's Curator of Malacology, Dr. Jann Vendetti, has all the info to start your search. See below for how to participate!
Why search for snails and slugs?
- Contribute to important research: your photos help us understand nature big and small. Snails and slugs help researchers investigate issues like how invasive species spread, the impact of habitat destruction and fragmentation, and more. All from a quick photo from your phone!
- Learn with a great community: Snails and slugs are small but mighty fascinating! Join us on social media, zoom, and iNaturalist to learn with other people who love nature.
- Prizes: Plenty of ways to win crocheted slugs by Dr. Jann Vendetti, SnailBlitz 2023 stickers, and other prizes while supplies last!
February 1, 2023: Get ready, get set, get snail (and slug) photos!
- February 14, 2023: Collaboration with The Snail Hospital on @NatureInLA
- March 1, 2023: Virtual Event with Dr. Vendetti and David Alexander of TAWA Compost & Food Rescue
- March 30, 2023: Virtual Event: Ask the Snail Dr. Anything with Chelsea Alexander of The Snail Hospital!
March 31, 2023: SnailBlitz 2023 Ends!
April 1–7: Vote on your favorite snail and slug observation photo and get a SnailBlitz 2023 sticker mailed to you! While supplies last.
April 8: Photo contest winners announced and will be contacted for prizes. Photo contest categories to be announced!
Other Ways to Get SnailBlitz Swag:
Check out our Secret Mission on iNaturalist
SOLVED: See the details on iNaturalist
- Attend a virtual event for a chance to win in our SnailBlitz Swag Raffle.
- Snail Loteria is Back! Get a row and let us know at SLIME@nhm.org to get a sticker! While supplies last.
SnailBlitz 2023's official sticker!
A crocheted slug by Dr. Jann Vendetti!
Bingo! It's the SnailBlitz loterìa bingo card!
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Ready to Snail It? Participate by:
- Joining the SnailBlitz 2023 iNaturalist Project and upload your photos through iNaturalist.org, available for free on the web, apple, or android
- E-mail your snail and slug photos from Southern California to SLIME@nhm.org. Remember to include the location, date and time you took the photo. *Staff and volunteers will upload your photo to the iNaturalist project for you with your first name and last initial for credit. Sensitive location information (homes, schools, daycares, etc) will be set to “obscured” - meaning only research scientists can see the exact location.
- Tag your posts on Instagram and Twitter with #SnailBlitz2023 *Staff and volunteers will contact you for date, time, and location info via PM from @NatureInLA. They will add your photo to the iNaturalist project for you with your social media handle for credit. Sensitive location information (homes, schools, daycares, etc) will be set to “obscured” - meaning only research scientists can see the exact location.
How to take a good snail or slug photo FOR SCIENCE!
Although snails and slugs are mostly nocturnal, on a rainy day you might see them boldly venturing across the sidewalk or crawling on plants and structures.
To find native species, look under:
- Decaying plants
- A decomposing tree trunk
- In and among leaf litter in oak woodland, riparian, or coastal sage scrub habitat.
- If you're outside at night with a flashlight, you might find several species.
- Clear photos of the top, sides, and bottom of the snail or slug help with identifying the species.
- Bonus Tip: It’s extra helpful if you can get a photo of the pneumostome (breathing tube opening) along the top and/or sides of the body (location depending on the species) and the foot (bottom) of the slug or snail.
- If you handle snails and slugs for photos, please be gentle and put them back where you found them. Do not lift a snail by the shell, this can harm them. Avoid touching your face and sanitize your hands after handling to prevent the possible spread of germs and parasites.
Check out past photo contest winners below
iNaturalist contributor: @sweetone80
@finatic on iNaturalist
Original post: https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/10407943
@alex_bairstow on iNaturalist
Mating Milky Slugs (Deroceras reticulatum);
Original post: https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/10194799
@misschiffonade on iNaturalist
Small Pointed Snail (Cochlicella barbara)l;
Original post: https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/10292089
iNaturalist contributor: @tomhorton
Common Garden Snail (Cornu aspersum);
Original post: https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/10057414
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About SLIME and SnailBlitz
Snailblitz is a part of the Museum's land snail iNaturalist project called SLIME.
While SLIME adds contributors' photos of land snails and slugs in Southern California throughout the year, SnailBlitz spans two months, from February 01 to March 31, and usually coincides with the rainiest weather of the year. Because the rain brings out snails and slugs, it is an excellent time to document what species live in Southern California and where they are found.
These include rare species like the San Gabriel chestnut snail, Glyptostoma gabrielense, found in the San Gabriel Mountains and foothills, and ones that are common, like the introduced milky slug, Deroceras reticulatum, found in gardens, parks, and urban landscaping.
Twila Bratcher Chair in Malacological Research