Fun White-lipped Snail Facts For Kids

Tanya Parkhi
Nov 07, 2022 By Tanya Parkhi
Originally Published on Sep 02, 2021
Edited by Jacob Fitzbright
Fact-checked by Gowri Rao
Here are some great white-lipped snail facts that you will love!
Age: 3-18
Read time: 6.1 Min

The white-lipped snail (Cepaea hortensis) is a type of land snail belonging to the family Helicidae. It is the close relative of the brown-lipped snail or grove snail, and both snails are virtually indistinguishable from each other if not for the white and brown bands around the openings of their shells.

It is usually found around the same locations as the grove snail and can commonly be found across Western and Central Europe and has also been introduced into North America.

It can withstand colder temperatures than the similar-looking grove snail, with its population being found slightly towards the Arctic region. It is usually found in densely vegetated areas such as grasslands, dunes, woodlands, and among plants in gardens.

To learn more about this snail species, read on! You can also learn about other insects with our glass snail facts and leaf-footed bug facts pages.

White-Lipped Snail Interesting Facts

What type of animal is a white-lipped snail?

The white-lipped snail (Cepaea hortensis) is a type of garden snail belonging to the family Helicidae, which is commonly found in Europe.

What class of animal does the white-lipped snail belong to?

The white-lipped snail belongs to the class Gastropoda, which encompasses all slugs and snails.

How many white-lipped snails are there in the world?

Due to their distribution being quite vast, and their widespread locations not being kept track of, the exact number of this snail in the wild is currently unknown.

Where does the white-lipped snail live?

The white-lipped snail is a land snail that can be found in Western and Central parts of Europe, mostly in the United Kingdom. They are very commonly spotted along the Scottish coast. They are also an introduced species in North America but are not as widely spread as the similar-looking grove snail.

What is a white-lipped snail's habitat?

The white-lipped snail can mainly be found in damp habitats and can be found in many areas in the wild such as in grasslands, gardens, dunes, woodlands, and among plants and hedges. They are also able to survive in colder climates than the grove snail, meaning its distribution tends to be slightly more north than that of its relative.

Who does the white-lipped snail live with?

White-lipped snails are solitary in nature, usually only coming together in order to mate. If large concentrations of snails occur for any reason, they can be considered pests due to overfeeding on the natural vegetation.

How long does a white-lipped snail live?

Though the exact lifespan of the white-lipped snail is unknown, most land snails live for between two to three years which is how much this snail likely lives for.

How do they reproduce?

White-lipped snails are hermaphrodites in nature, meaning they possess both male and female reproductive organs.

However, they cannot self-fertilize and still need to mate in order to lay eggs. The breeding season for these snails takes place between spring and autumn, during which snails find partners and initiate mating by piercing each other with 'love darts' made of calcium carbonate.

After the actual mating process, the snails then go their separate ways and lay around 100 eggs each among plants in soft soil, which hatch in about a month's time.

What is their conservation status?

The conservation status and population number of the white-lipped snail has not been evaluated due to the difficulty in locating and counting its entire population. Though it does not have any given status, it is not thought to be under any immediate threat due to being very commonly sighted around Europe.

White-Lipped Snail Fun Facts

What does the white-lipped snail look like?

The white-lipped snail is easily identifiable by the white band running around the base of its shell.

The white-lipped snail is a small garden snail that usually has a very light-colored shell. The shell usually ranges in color from white to very light yellow or brown, with dark chocolate brown bands spiraling from the center to the edges.

It is of course distinguishable from the grove snail species by the prominent white lip which is located around the base of the shell's opening. The snail itself is milky white or gray and translucent in appearance, the color-changing towards yellow at the tail.

The shell of a juvenile banded snail is soft and hardens as the snail grows bigger and reaches maturity.

How cute are they?

As far as snail species go, the beautifully patterned, white-banded shell of this snail makes it quite attractive in appearance.

How do they communicate?

Snails have two antennae on their heads they use to communicate with others by touching them against the antennae of other snails. They also leave a trail of mucus which can be picked up on by other individuals.

Though snails cannot hear, they do have eyes through which they can see, and they are also able to communicate by secreting and interpreting various chemical residues.

How big is a white-lipped snail?

The shell of the white-lipped snail (Cepaea hortensis) spans around 1 in (25 mm) in diameter, with the snail nesting inside.

How fast can a white lipped snail move?

The common land snail moves at around 0.029 mph (0.048 kph). Considering this, it is among one of the slowest animals on earth.

How much does a white-lipped snail weigh?

Though the exact weight of the white-lipped snail (C. hortensis) remains unrecorded, like most land snails it likely weighs between the range of 0.35-0.88 oz (10-25 g).

What are the male and female names of the species?

There are no distinct names for either sex of this species.

What would you call a baby white-lipped snail?

Baby white-lipped snails do not have any special name.

What do they eat?

White-lipped snail food is quite easily obtainable, with these land snails being herbivorous in nature. They are quite fond of nettles, ragwort, and hogweed, plants that are easily available on the ground or in gardens and most banded snails can feed on without taking much effort.

Are they dangerous?

No, these common snails are not dangerous at all. They are quite docile and do not pose any threat to humans at all. If planning to consume these snails, it is important to thoroughly clean and prepare them properly while cooking to get rid of any harmful toxins present.

Would they make a good pet?

Snails make great pets for beginners.

They are very docile, slow-moving creatures and do not take up much space or attention. White-lipped snail care is quite easy-they can adapt well to any habitat and simply need a clean, well-decorated enclosure with facilities for food and water, with which they will remain content.

Though they cannot feel any emotion and are not a great choice for people who want to form an emotional bond with their white-lipped snail pet, they are still a great low-effort pet for children and anyone who loves snails.

Did you know...

White-lipped snail eggs are considered a delicacy and are consume as snail caviar.

Some other cool snails are the partula snail, the decollate snail, and the glass snail.

Their eggs measure around 0.07 in (2 mm) in length.

Most snails belong to the family Helicidae, and they are known as 'typical snails', being the type of snail species we mostly spot in gardens and woods.

Why are they called white-lipped snails?

White-lipped snails are named so due to the distinct white 'lip' present around the opening of their shell. Though the shell may be yellow or light brown in color, the band around the opening of this species shell is always white.

What other names do the white-lipped snails have?

The common name of the white-lipped garden snail (Cepaea hortensis) species is the banded garden snail, as it and its close relative the brown lipped snail (grove snail) commonly range in wooded areas such as grasslands and gardens all over western and central Europe.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly animal facts for everyone to discover! For more great insect species, check out our apple snail facts and sea slug fact pages.

You can even occupy yourself at home by coloring in one of our free printable snail coloring pages.

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Written by Tanya Parkhi

Bachelor of Arts specializing in Economics

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Tanya ParkhiBachelor of Arts specializing in Economics

Tanya is a skilled content creator with a passion for writing and a love for exploring new cultures. With a degree in Economics from Fergusson College, Pune, India, Tanya worked on her writing skills by contributing to various editorials and publications. She has experience writing blogs, articles, and essays, covering a range of topics. Tanya's writing reflects her interest in travel and exploring local traditions. Her articles showcase her ability to engage readers and keep them interested.

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Fact-checked by Gowri Rao

Bachelor of Arts specializing in Economics

Gowri Rao picture

Gowri RaoBachelor of Arts specializing in Economics

With a bachelor's degree in Economics from Krea University, Gowri is a highly skilled data analyst and an expert in regression and causation modeling. Her interests in economic trends, finance, and investment research complement her professional expertise. In addition to her professional pursuits, Gowri enjoys swimming, running, and playing the drums, and she is also a talented tutor.

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