Ghost slugs invade Britain?

17 10 2008

The “Ghost Slug” (Selenochlamys ysbryda) is a newly described species of slug. Not only is it a creepy pale white colour, but it is a predator. This slug hunts down worms and eats them with its set of micro-razor teeth. As worms are considered a gardener’s friend, this slug is not.

The Museum of Wales is seeking further information on the Ghost Slug, and other related slugs. As the slugs have only been noticed in the last few years, and appear to be unrelated to local slugs (their nearest relatives hailing from Georgia and eastern Turkey), it is being assumed that it is an introduced species. Invasive species can be rather destructive to native island ecosystems, which the UK still is.

Soil-dwelling creatures are notorious global hitchhikers (eg. fire ants). Earth is moved by construction works, dirt trapped in travelers’ shoes, or the soil mix in potted plants – the latter currently being blamed for this little feller’s unwelcome trip to Wales.

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