Portraits of Wildflowers

Perspectives on Nature Photography

A little white ground snail in an atypical place

with 6 comments

Click for greater clarity.

Click for greater clarity.

Along the same fringe of Spicewood Springs Rd. in far north Austin where I recently found a possumhaw full of fruit, I once photographed this little white snail on the glochids (and one spine) of a prickly pear cactus. The date was August 15, 2011. The cactus is still there, but I can’t say the same for the snail.

© 2013 Steven Schwartzman

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Written by Steve Schwartzman

January 22, 2013 at 6:20 AM

6 Responses

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  1. Snails seem to have a way of getting themselves stuck in strange places. ;)

    Lynda

    January 22, 2013 at 7:13 AM

  2. What an interesting place. I had to really look a while to figure out what is was stuck to. I had not read the post.

    petspeopleandlife

    January 22, 2013 at 10:29 PM

  3. That little white snail’s living quite a different life from my Janthina! I was glad for the link to glochids. I’d never heard the word, though I know the reality. I read the entire entry, picked up a few more words and a good bit more understanding about cactus.

    And, as a final treat, I found one of those connections so dear to my heart: “Glochids from prickly pears (Opuntia species) can cause an extremely pruritic, papular eruption called sabra dermatitis, which can easily be confused with scabies or fiberglass dermatitis.” I know fiberglass dermatitis! So here’s a tip that may or may not help with glochids. In the shipyard, a low-tech and pretty effective way of getting fiberglass off skin is to rub the affected area vigorously with nylon stockings. If you ever spot a pile of nylons around boats, that’s probably the explanation. ;)

    shoreacres

    January 23, 2013 at 7:44 AM

    • Definitely a different life from your Janthina. I learned about glochids, and not just the word, soon after I started concentrating on native plants in Texas. Add glochids to the list of occupational hazards a nature photographer faces here (but luckily I’ve never gotten any glochids stuck in my face). I’m sorry to hear that you know about fiberglass dermatitis in the same way I know about glochiditis (to coin a term). I’ll keep your remedy in mind for the next time I’m afflicted. Thanks for the suggestion.

      Steve Schwartzman

      January 23, 2013 at 8:07 AM


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