Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Fun with Snails

This week for our nature study, we looked at snails. The girls and I went outside and dug around under rocks and things, and we actually found some! They were very small - you can see the penny on their plate for size reference. Two of them were probably about 1/4" in diameter, and the littlest one maybe slightly more than 1/8".

The girls really got into watching them! We read about them in The Handbook of Nature Study, and we enjoyed seeing them check things out with their eyes and do the things the book described. The tiniest snail had a clear part at the end of its shell, which I believe showed that it was adding onto its home because it was growing.

We put a little slice of very ripe nectarine in with them, because the book said to give them pulpy fruit. They all checked it out, but I'm not sure they ate any of it. One of them seemed to, but then it decided to check out more of the new surroundings.

It was interesting to watch them climb the glass. One of the larger ones crawled right over to the edge of the glass, twisted itself into some amazing contortions, and then attached itself to the side of the glass about 1/4" above the plate. The other "big" snail took a little longer to come out, but when it did, we called it the "adventurous soul," because it climbed right to the top of the glass and then all around inside it. The tiny snail took the longest time to come out, but when it did, it also made a thorough exploration of the glass.

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