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Officials find invasive snails in Hot Springs Village lakes

The Arkansas Game and Fish Commission has found an invasive species of snail in two lakes in Hot Springs Village.

(Eds. note: The video attached is a March 2022 report on Bradford pears, an invasive tree species.)

An invasive species of snail was found in two lakes in Hot Springs Village, according to the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission.

The mystery snails, which are native to Asia, were found in Lake Granada and Lake Estrella after the species was reported in April.

There are three species of mystery snail (banded, Chinese, and Japanese) and they popular with people who use aquariums.

Of the three, the Chinese mystery snail is a prohibited species in Arkansas. That means it's illegal to import, transport, or possess them in the state.

The release of banded or Japanese mystery snails into the wild is also illegal.

“An aquarium release is likely where this infestation began,” Matt Horton, AGFC aquatic nuisance species coordinator, said. “It may seem harmless to release a couple of aquarium pets into the wild, but without their native predators and environmental conditions to keep them in check, some species can quickly overtake new systems where they are introduced.”

Officials said that the invasive species can carry parasites that can infect native animals, mussel species, and people as well.

AGFC collected over 260 snails from the two lakes and will investigate them for any parasites or diseases.

Snails were sent to the Auburn University Fish Disease Lab for analysis and samples were sent to another lab to determine the species of mystery snail.

For more information on preventing the spread of invasive species, visit www.habitattitude.net or www.stopaquatichitchhikers.org.

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