So in order to make this snail water, I need snails.
European snails are huge – they’ve great, lovely ramshorn shells which are kind of thin and they’re easily thumb sized or larger.
Snails are highly invasive, and in my state are regulated by the EPA, so to do this I really need local snails.
Local terrestrial snails are small. The largest are the size of a pinkie nail, I’d say, in 3D. They don’t grow large and so it takes a lot of them to make the bulk of one European land snail.
One of my baronial friends, Jenn Millar, picked the snails from her garden and presented me with a large canning jar full of them. They broached containment by eating the saran wrap, and my husband found them making the “slowest getaway ever” and put them outside.
I collected them back into a large, clear plastic orange juice container that I made into a terrarium of sorts. It’s clear that I have to make a more thoughtful one, and also that I need to learn more about snail lifespans, because they lived well for about 2-3 weeks and now they’re all dead.
That’s actually what I planned, because I want to raise domestic snails from the many eggs on the sides of the container, so they’ll have less chance of harboring disease (even though I think it’s not relevant based on the way they’ll be prepared, you know, still.)
The snails growing in the aquarium are doing ok. I hope to cycle out the water over the winter so I wind up with snails in clear, clean pure water and not pond water. Who knows what will happen to the leeches who live in there with them, but we’ll see.
I’ll keep reporting back.