The Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (FDACS) confirmed the detection of giant African land snail in the New Port Richey area of Pasco County. This detection was reported by a Pasco County Master Gardener.
FDACS’s Division of Plant Industry has begun to survey the area, enacted a quarantine and will begin treatment for this detrimental pest. FDACS will treat properties with a metaldehyde-based molluscicide (snail bait). The treatment is labeled by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency for residential use.
Please see the map below for the quarantine area.
It is unlawful to move the giant African land snail or a regulated article, including but not limited to, plants, plants parts, plants in soil, soil, yard waste, debris, compost or building materials, within, through or from a quarantine area without a compliance agreement.
To obtain a compliance agreement, call 1-888-397-1517 or email DPIHelpline@FDACS.gov.
Metaldehyde is a pesticide used to control snails and slugs and is approved for use in a variety of vegetable and ornamental crops in the field or greenhouse, on fruit trees, small-fruit plants, in avocado and citrus orchards, berry plants, banana plants and in limited residential areas. Available products can be applied as granules, sprays, dusts or bait pellets. Applications are typically made to the ground around the plants or crops to be protected.
Property owners inside the treatment area will be notified in person or by posted notice at least 24 hours in advance of the planned pesticide treatment.
Metaldehyde works by disrupting the mucus production ability of snails and slugs. This reduces their digestion and mobility and makes them susceptible to dehydration. Snails and slugs that have eaten metaldehyde often seek hiding places, become inactive and begin to die within days.
Think you found a giant African land snail? Email a photo for identification to DPIHelpline@FDACS.gov.
For more information, please visit the FDACS website.