Chinese mystery snail is a regulated invasive species. Regulated Invasive Species (MN DNR) are legal to buy, sell, transport, and possess, but may not be introduced into a free-living state, such as released into public waters.
- Chinese mystery snail populations can reach large numbers, which may foul beaches and shore land during die-offs.
- They can carry parasites that impact native mussels.
Chinese mystery snails should be reported. Learn how to report invasive species in Minnesota.
How to identify Chinese mystery snails
- Chinese mystery snails (Cipangopaludina chinensis) are an invasive species.
- Large, smooth, tan to brown shell that can grow 2 inches long.
- Shell lacks banding and can have 6–7 whorls.
- Snails have an operculum (structure that functions much like a lid or “trapdoor”) with distinct growth rings.
- An operculum is not likely to be present in dead specimens.
- Females tend to live up to 5 years while males live 3–4 years.
- Female snails will give birth to live, crawling young from June to October.
Reviewed in 2019