Smooth Land Slug

Deroceras spp.

Smooth Land Slug

Deroceras sp. (14676179872) by Donald Hobern (CC BY 2.0)
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A close up of a slug Deroceras
Deroceras sp. (14676179872) by Donald Hobern (CC BY 2.0)
1 of 3
Slugs are one of the most common garden pests. Slugs are terrestrial gastropod molluscs, with no shells. The soft, slimy bodies of slugs are prone to desiccation, so land-living slugs are confined to moist environments.

Traits

Eaten by mammals, birds and other insects.
Pests of garden plants and crops.

Symptoms

Seedlings attacked are left as leaf mid-ribs and stumps. Perfect, round holes in tomatoes, strawberries, and other soft fruits. Ragged holes in leaf edges and centres. Slime trails on plants, walls, rocks, or mulch.

Activity

Diurnal

Personality

Family

Agriolimacidae

Metamorphosis

Incomplete

Distribution

Worldwide

Biological treatment

Slugs thrive in wet conditions - always water in the morning so the garden dries by nightfall. Plant resistant plants like herbs - slugs dislike heavily fragranced, fuzzy or furry foliage. Protect young plants using plastic bottles or other coverings. Or let seedlings become larger before transplanting them. Encourage birds, snakes, lizards, toads, frogs, and ground beetles to make a home in your garden. Sprinkle salt around your plants - placed directly on a slug’s body, may desiccate it enough to lead to its death. Diatomaceous earth, a fine powder that is very sharp microscopically and the edges easily cut through slug skin and desiccate them as they crawl over it. Replenish it after every rain or heavy dew. Hair, eggshells, soot, bark and wood clippings can be used as barriers.

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