Invasive horntail snail, which ‘could cause serious health implications’ found in Florida

The snails can be an “intermediate host” of rat lung worm, which can cause meningitis in humans.

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click to enlarge Invasive horntail snail, which ‘could cause serious health implications’ found in Florida
Photo via FDAC

A horntail snail, an invasive pest common in India, has been found in Miami-Dade County, spurring agriculture officials to start a program to prevent the possible spread of the species, the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services said Thursday.

“The horntail snail is an invasive pest with the potential to cause serious health implications for Floridians,” Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried said in a prepared statement. “Our Division of Plant Industry and essential industry partners are continuing to monitor this threat and working towards a plan to stop the horntail snail’s spread into other areas of Florida.”

The department said horntail snails feed on a variety of crops, such as lettuce, beans and yams. It also said the snails can be an “intermediate host” of rat lung worm, which can cause meningitis in humans.

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