The shell is the outer skeleton of a mollusk, consisting of three layers:
- periostracum (the outer organic layer containing conchiolin);
- ostracum (middle layer containing lime);
- hypostracum (inner layer, also limestone in a conhiolin shell).
Babies are born already with a shell (transparent and thin). As the animal grows, the house strengthens. Along the edge of the mantle (the skin fold adjacent to the base of the shell), new layers are deposited, forming rings that count age (one ring in one year).
Each snail is unique and differs precisely in the shape and color of the shell, there is a pattern like lines on the human palm.
- with stripes (diagonally, in a spiral, in the form of a zigzag);
- with spots;
- with patterns.
It is impossible to find two identical shells.
Grape Snail Color Features
Helix pomatia is the most common type of terrestrial gastropod mollusk in Ukraine, which easily adapts to any habitat. Grape snails are found in mixed forests, in grass, shrubs, orchards, and vegetable gardens.
The diameter of the sink is 3-5 cm (this is enough for the owner to completely hide in the house). The carapace is bent in a spiral, consists of 4-5 revolutions and is unwound in shape from the center to the base in a clockwise direction. Coloring — from tan to brown-white.
The color of the shell is more dependent on the habitat:
- in dry and sunny places it is lighter and harder (this protects the mollusk from drying out);
- If the area is shady and humid, the carapace is darker and thinner.
The color of the shell also serves as a disguise from enemies: frogs, lizards, birds of prey, hedgehogs. Adapting to the environment, snails become invisible. That’s why they are hard to see on a tree trunk, near a stump or in dry grass.
Food also affects coloring, but to a small extent. This fact is noticeable only with artificial breeding of mollusks. If there are a lot of bright vegetables in their diet (for example, carrots), the sink eventually acquires a more contrasting shade. Eliminating or reducing the amount of this product, you will notice a blanching of the house after 2-3 weeks.
White plaque on the shell
This feature arises quite often and can be caused by a number of reasons:
- advanced age (like gray hair in a person’s hair);
- high humidity, which provokes the appearance of mold;
- untreated tap water (chlorine negatively affects the shell and well-being of the animal).
The condition and color of the shell is an indicator of the health of the mollusk. If you breed snails, pay attention to this marker to take timely action.