Escargot Might Face Extinction in France

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One of the iconic local dishes in France is escargot, or snail, but the discovery of an invasive species of flatworm from Southeast Asia means that snails in France might be facing extinction.

One of France’s iconic dishes, escargot or snails, is under threat after the discovery in Normandy of an invasive species of flatworm from Southeast Asia.

The New Guinea flatworm also known by the scientific name Platydemus manokwari is reportedly on the list of the top 100 most dangerous invasive species because of the devastating effect it can have on native snails and earthworms.

The indigenous habitat of the flatworm is in the moderate climate 10 thousand feet and up in the mountains of New Guinea.

PeerJ, a publisher of peer-reviewed studies is quoted as saying: "Platydemus manokwari represents a new and significant threat to biodiversity in France and Europe, which hosts hundreds of species of snails, some of which are endangered and protected. It is therefore important to consider the implementation of eradication and control of this flatworm.”

Another invasive species of flatworm from New Zealand is already causing problems after turning up in the northern British Isles, where it is being blamed for a decrease in the number of earthworms there.