A trio of apple-sized snails are settling in to their new home at Bristol Aquarium after being donated by a member of the public.
The Harbourside aquarium was gifted the three orange apple snails earlier this month and, following a spell in quarantine, they have now gone on display in their blind cave fish tank.
Apple snails, or Ampullariidae, get their common name from their large size and colouration which is said to resemble an apple.
When properly cared for, some apple snail species can reach 15 cm (5.9 in) diameter making them the largest types of freshwater snail in the world.
Bristol Aquarium’s Jake Graham said: “Apple snails are really unique because they have both a gill and a lung, meaning they are able to breathe both in and out of water. They are truly amphibious.
“They’re exceptionally hardy and well adapted to tropical regions where they can survive periods of drought alternating with periods of high rainfall. They are able to seal the shell entrance to prevent drying out while they are buried in the mud during dry periods.
“In captivity, as well as eating vegetables and fish food pellets, apple snails will also eat brine shrimps, dead fish and insects,” he added.
In Veracruz, Mexico, this large snail is locally known as “tegogolo” and is prized as a nutritious food item. They are low in fat and high in minerals, although only wild or specifically cultured apple snails are deemed fit for human consumption.
For more information please contact Sarah Moore or Jake Graham on 0117 929 8929.