Pesky snails return to haunt Mobile ponds, creeks

MOBILE, Ala. (AP) - Biologists believe that pesky Amazonian apple snails are back in ponds and creeks around Mobile and are trying to figure a way to keep them out of the Mobile-Tensaw Delta.

Egg masses found in Three Mile Creek near the Telegraph Road bridge suggest a reproducing population of the snails has gained a foothold about a mile delta and its aquatic plants.

The snails grow to about the size of a child's fist. Officials told the Mobile Press-Register they were likely dumped in a local pond after they had grown too large for a home aquarium, officials have said. The snails are known for destroying rice crops in South Asia and devouring native water plants in Texas and Louisiana.

The snails are notoriously hard to exterminate once established.

(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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