Have you ever looked closely at a snail shell?
The shell can be many colors, but it is usually opaque.
When I downloaded this photo, I was surprised to see the channels on the inside of the shell. Can you see the vein-like, branching structures I'm talking about?
Let's zoom in:
It turns out that in young land snails like this one -- with a thinner, more transparent shell -- it is possible to see the interior vessels of the mantle and mantle cavity (lung).
In fact, if you look closely you might see some of the other internal organs, as well.
Do you like snails? See our previous post about snails:
Snail Q and A and fiction picture book, Escargot
A writing friend recently introduced me to the cutest fiction picture book about a snail, Escargot by Daska Slater and illustrated by Sydney Hanson.
You can see for yourself. Sophia reads the entire book in this video:
Although I usually feature nonfiction, fiction children's books like this one may also inspire us to investigate scientific questions.
Do snails eat carrots?
Yes, they do. When we raised them years ago, our brown garden snails ate carrots. It was easy to find videos of other kinds of snails eating carrots, too.
What is a snail's mouth like?
A snail scrapes off food with a radula, which has teeth like a saw blade.
Do snails really have eyes?
Yes, but not where they are shown in the book.
The snail eyes are the black spots at the ends of the upper feelers or tentacles.
What are those other things sticking out of a snail's head?
The lower feelers or tentacles help the snail taste or smell its food.
Where do snails come from?
Adult snails lay eggs.
Tiny baby snails hatch out of the eggs, complete with tiny shells. Their shells get bigger as they grow.
Would a snail really like vinaigrette on its salad?
No, the vinegar in the vinaigrette could harm a snail.
Did reading the book Escargot give you any questions about snails? If so, we'd love to hear them.