Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Apple Snails and Ships

We have a new invasive specie chowing down on our ever shrinking wet lands. The wet lands are not shrinking because of global warming. They are shrinking because of us...man- period. We don't let nature do its thing anymore. Anyway....We have these garmunkcuant snails sliming all over everything now. According to experts they probably escaped some aquarium. I can just see that. "Excuse me mam...I'm outta here...I have a great big world to eat...Um I mean see."

The first thing I thought was.."Can you eat them?" If it's edible, its on the endangered specie list in three months around here. Turns out you can. But...if not cooked thoroughly they pass along to humans a nasty parasite that is called "rat lungworm". Doesn't that sound nice? "I have rat lungworm! Come give me a hug" They also host another parasite that causes swimmers itch. Well there aren't too many waters in Louisiana you will want to swim in anyway so that might not be a problem. Diving into water that resembles hot chocolate isn't too appetizing.

So it seems their claims to fame are quickly de-vegetizing the swamp and passing along parasites. So why did they name them such a cute name as "Apple Snails". It makes them harmless sounding like "apple pie". Why not something like "Parasitical Death Snails". But then every teenager in the country would be wanting one. Maybe "Parasitical Skin Deforming Snails" no woman or teenager would ever want something that could mar their skin and I'm sure men just aren't interested. Then maybe no one would want to keep these critters in their aquariums, and then they couldn't escape!!!!! I think this is making no sense. Lately nothing seems too anyway, so...Since people kept these critters, I will have to do what I must.....

Here are the eggs. The eggs lose their fertility if they are submerged. All you have to do is simply scrape them off into the water and ...presto they're dead. Now to maneuver down into the ditch scrape them off the outside and inside of the pipe....That should make an interesting picture. Why don't alligators eat these things? Or Raccoons? They eat everything else. We did have a two foot long alligator living right where we found the snails. The snails probably ate him!
See my little house in the left hand corner? See the big huge ship that anchored behind my house at three in the morning? I woke at three to the very loud clanking and scraping sound of a huge chain and anchor being dropped. It makes an awful clamor like you wouldn't believe. You learn to identify the sounds of the ships once you have lived here a while. Like - the high pitched whine of a crew boat, the clanging of an anchor chain, the beat of the propeller on an empty ship, ...when I first moved here it sounded like alien ships landing. Now it's just background noise.
Another big ship that pulled anchor this morning and left.
This ship is cruising back to the Gulf after Ike passed.
I just wanted you to see how happy my girls are that we cleaned out their water logged house and run and gave them bunches of fresh hay. The rooster showed his appreciation by spurring me three times before I could turn the water hose on him. I warned him that I am not a vegetarian.


tipper said...

The snails are just eewww!! The ships are interesting. Can't imagine being that near something that big.

Love the chickens too. Glad you showed the rooster whose boss.

Lemongrass said...

I enjoyed the trip through your blog. Great pictures and to the point descriptions. I have never seen figs the color that you have. Would love to begin the day with a bowl of these. Figs are one of favorite fruits.

Sandy said...

Interesting to see how different things are down in there in such practical ways -- I envy your long growing season. I know this has nothing to do with snails or ships, but I would love to see an "authentic" gumbo recipe, as I've grown okra this summer! Some I'm using for an Okra Curry recipe I've been wanting to try. Great Blog. Thanks! Sandy

Egghead said...

Kristi you are too funny. The flogging is why I got rid of my roosters long ago and decided that hens are the only thing I need. I just could not get them to stop that business of raking up my legs. We just rotate out our older hens every second year with new chicks.

Very cool pictures of the ships. They are so huge. Are those you greenhouses across the road from your house?

han_ysic said...

Disgusting snails. I have so many as well. I go out with my gumboots after dark and attack them. (evil laugh)
Ps did the rooster pay attention to your threats?

Kristi said...

Egghead - No the greenhouses aren't mine. They are my neighbors. He removed the most heavenly smelling citrus orchard to begin selling trees exclusively.

Han ysic- I need some of those gumboots when I go into the chicken run!