Big sails on tiny snails

Description: I see huge numbers of //Lacuna// spp. snails when I'm working in seagrass beds on San Juan Island. They frequently have algae fouling their shells, and sometimes the blades of algae are enormous compared to the snail (see pictures).

I wonder if the algae affect the snails' locomotion. The blades might make it a little harder for the snails to walk around, but on the other hand maybe they can use large algal blades as sails when drifting (if they drift). Or maybe they don't even notice the algae.

I am also really curious about how the algae manage to grow so large on such a mobile substratum.

Both of these photos were taken by me, Yasmin von Dassow, and the scale bars shown are in mm. The snails are from False Bay, San Juan Island, WA, collected in July 2014.

Page creator's name: Yasmin von Dassow
Page creator's contact info:

biology ecology epibionts locomotion snails

Created: 08 Aug 2014 03:00
Updated: 06 Jan 2015 21:39


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