Giant African Snail

Giant African Snail

Scientific name: Achatina fulica


The giant African land snail has been introduced around the world from its native home in Eastern Africa. It is classed as one of the world’s most invasive species.

They move along on a single foot, driven by waves of muscle contraction in the sole. A gland at the front of the foot produces slime for the foot to slide over. They can grow to a length of up to 20cms and the shell has 7 to 9 whorls.

The giant African land snail is a hermaphrodite, meaning that each individual has both male and female reproductive organs. In order to reproduce, the two individuals must engage in a behaviour known as ‘reciprocal copulation’, where sperm from one snail is used to fertilise the eggs in the other, and vice versa. The number of eggs laid in each clutch depends on the age of the snail, although it is usually between 100 and 500 eggs, sometimes up to 1,000!

Least Concern (Inc. Bar)
  1. We live...

    In the Reptile House, next to the Meerkat enclosure.

  1. Size Fact

    They weigh around 250 grams.

  2. Food Fact

    The giant African land snail is a herbivore and feeds on a variety of plants, fruit and vegetables.

  3. Fun Fact

    It is illegal to import this species into many countries.

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