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snails

Row crop producers often have issues with snail and slug issues. Snails (with a hard shell) and slugs (without a shell) can cause direct crop damage and contamination in severe cases. Snails produce an acidic material from their foot that dissolves calcium in the soil and allows production of the shell. Below are management recommendations, which are limited in row crops because of the high cost of materials.

Favorable Conditions for Snails and Slugs

  • Frequent rainfall
  • High organic matter and debris on soil – this allows snails/slugs to hide during the day.
  • Dense crop foliage provides shelter and makes it easy for the pest to move between plants.
  • Excessive foliage also hinders treatment applications and product effectiveness.

Cultural Control Tactics

Tillage is a common practice that disturbs soil and kills snails and slugs. Heavily infested fields may be tilled before planting successive crops to prevent pest buildup. However, this may not be an option for producers using conservation tillage systems. There is not much in research information in terms of snail/slug control in peanuts.

Commercial Products

It is a good idea to check with company representatives for purchasing snail and slug control products, as they are different from insecticides. Note: insecticides will not control snails/slugs.

  • Bug-N-Sluggo
    • OMRI approved commercial bait with iron phosphate & spinosad, manufactured by Certis USA
    • Works against field and garden slugs, cutworms, earwigs, and other ground pests
    • Has peanuts on the label
    • Use rate 20 to 44 pounds per acre with 14 d PHI, no more than three applications per season
  • Deadline M-Ps (mini pellets, http://www.amvac-chemical.com/Product-Details/pid/152) has corn and soybean label, but not on peanuts.
    • Manufactured by AMVAC Chemical Corporation
    • Has 4% metaldehyde

More Information

Below are a few publications that may help producers understand the basic biology and identification characteristics for snails and slugs. Growers can also contact the Extension agent in their area for help with identification.

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