Official Pest Report

Official Pest Reports are provided by National Plant Protection Organizations within the NAPPO region. These Pest Reports are intended to comply with the International Plant Protection Convention's Standard on Pest Reporting, endorsed by the Interim Commission on Phytosanitary Measures in March 2002.

Detection of Giant African Snail (Lissachatina fulica) in Florida

Country: United States

Title: Detection of Giant African Snail (Lissachatina fulica) in Florida

Robert Balaam, Eastern Regional Program Manager at (305) 278- 4872, or Andrea Simao, National Program Manager, at (301) 734-0930

Report: On September 9, 2011, the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service confirmed the detection of the Giant African Snail (GAS), Lissachatina fulica (formerly Achatina fulica), in Miami, Florida.

APHIS and the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services have established an incident command system to deal with the infestation. No nurseries are currently located within the known infested areas. An ongoing extensive outreach campaign has resulted in numerous homeowner reports of detections. The incident command system is currently conducting survey, control, and regulatory activities to determine and limit the extent of the infestation.

GAS is one of the most damaging snails in the world because they are known to consume at least 500 different plants including vegetables, fruits, and ornamental crops. These snails may also cause structural damage to buildings by consuming plaster and stucco for calcium required to grow their large shells. GAS may pose public health concerns because they are also known to carry organisms that can cause diseases in humans.

Under IPPC standards, Lissachatina fulica is considered to be a pest that is transient: actionable, and under eradication in the United States.

Posted Date: Sept. 28, 2011, 9 a.m.