snails (plant pests)
Gastropoda - (snails and slugs)
This is a large class of soft-bodied animals under the phylum of Mollusca. The snails construct a hard, calcareous shell which is carried on the back. Usually the shell is large enough for the animal to withdraw for protection. Many snails also carry a hard lid (operculum) with which they can close the shell opening. Slugs lack a shell.
A number of species are agricultural pests. These are typically polyphagous land snails. Vegetables are the most commonly attacked crops. Some species like the giant African snail have been widely distributed by humans because they are regarded as a source of food. Some of these introduced species have become serious pests.
In total, the group contains almost 100,000 species which live in water or on land, often in moist areas. The shell is usually coiled in a right-handed spiral when seen from the top. Land snails have lungs in contrast to the water snails which have gills.
The following genera and individual species are currently entered under Gastropoda: