Species of the Month: March 2024

Girdled Snail Hygromia cinctella


During 2024, our 20th anniversary year, we are revisiting our Species of the Month archive to reshare some of our "greatest hits" through the years. This month we are going back to January 2017, and the diminutive Girdled Snail. The number of records has more than doubled (from 137 to 281) since we first highlighted this species; can you help it get even further?

A common species in the Mediterranean, the Girdled Snail has been introduced to the UK in recent years, probably with potted plants. The species is now well established in southern England and Wales, frequently over wintering in porches and outbuildings. Girdled Snail is sure to be widespread in south Wales, yet SEWBReC holds just 281 records in our database (view the Welsh distribution on Aderyn here).

The species is about 1cm across and varies in colour, but can be distinguished by the sharp keel of the shell, which is highlighted by a pale ring. Other small garden snails are more rounded in shape, so this species should be easy to pick out, More ID information can be found from NatureSpot and Worcestershire Biological Records Centre. If you are unsure about identification, please take photos of your snail from all sides, and we can send to a snail expert to confirm.

If you spot Girdled Snail during March (or at any other time of year), please send us the record, ideally via SEWBReCORD or the LERC Wales App. Instructions on how to submit records are available here.