The best soil for snail farming
You may or may not have seen snails in the garden if you did, did you notice that you can hardly see them during the day, or in sandy (stone-filled) soil?
Snails love cool and moderately moist environments and do not stay in waterlogged area as well.
The major purpose of constructing a pen for your snails is to create an environment that replicates the natural snail-loving environment.
Soil and other natural materials such as leaves are added into the pen in a bid to create a suitable environment for the snails.
The soil in the snail pen is made suitable for snails through treatment.
Aside from treating the soil, selecting the best soil for snail farming is another important way to create the right environment for the snails in the pen.
This is to say that; even though the soil will be treated, not every soil is good for snail farming
When selecting the soil for your snail farm, you need to consider the following factors.
How to identify the best soil for snail farming
Here are factors to consider when selecting soil for snail farming
Factors to consider when selecting soil for snail farming
- Soil texture: This is the percentage of silt, sand and clay content of the soil. It determines the rate at which water and other minerals move in and out of the soil.
A soil with higher clay content has very low pore spaces and therefore do not permit water and mineral movement, this is not good for snail farming.
- Soil Acidity: Soils with high acidic content are not good for snail farming.
Avoid soils with chemical, soils infected with chemicals such as pesticides, fertilizers, insecticides or that has been used for laboratory activities are not good for snail farming.
- Soil salinity: Salinity is the amount of salt in the soil, soil with salt content is not good for snail.
When training snails, avoid exposing your snails to salt. Exposing the snails to salt leads to death of the snail.
- Soil composition: This is the amount of organic matter, water, nutrient and micro-organism present in the soil.
Depending on which of the content is high, snails Do Not appreciate soils with high water content.
Considering the above factors, clay soil has a high water-holding capacity and become compact when dry. Therefore, clay soil is not good for snail farming,.
Sandy soil on the other hand has high pore spaces and therefore will dry easily, leaving the snail pen dry, this is not good for the snails.
What is the best soil for snail farming?
The best soil for snail farming is Loamy soil because it has the qualities snail desire for maximum growth, loam soil contains a great amount of organic matter which is needed by the snails.
It has good water retention capacity because of its clay content, this allows the loamy soil to hold the amount of moisture and soil nutrient needed by the snail.
Why Loam soil is the best soil for snail farming
Loamy soil is the best soil for snail farming and it has the following characteristics which make it better than other types of soils.
1. Balanced soil composition: Loamy soil is a type of soils dominated by sand particles, but contain enough clay and sediment to provide some structure and fertility.
Its balanced nature gave it the blessings to bear the required conducive environment that snails thrive on.
2. Low water-holding capacity: Loamy soils contain moderate water holding capacity.
This is because it allows for the movement of water in and out of the soil and therefore does not encourage waterlogging.
This is the nature of soil snails love.
3. A good amount of organic matter: Loamy soil contains a good amount of organic matter; this is needed by snails for nourishment.
4. Rich organic minerals: Loamy soil is rich in organic minerals. Snails perform well in an organic matter rich soil, this is because they derive nutrient from the organic matters in the soil.
5. Lack of toxic chemical substances: Due to the presence of organic matter in the soil, sandy-loam soils have very low or no toxic chemical substances.
This is the type of soil that provides the snail an environment, which look closely like the natural environment that snails enjoy growing on. Therefore, when choosing your soil for snail farming, ensure you look out for loamy Soil.
How to identify Loamy soil in your local area.
Aside from the above characteristics of Loamy soil, loamy soil will form a cohesive ribbon of soil when squeezed out between your thumb and finger.
This ribbon will fall apart before it reaches the ground when thrown up. For easier identification of the loamy soil, look out for soils that support the growth of cucumber, tomato, vegetables and watermelon.
You can also find loamy soil in shallow forested areas in your locality but before tagging it loamy soil, ensure you examine it using the above method.
Once again, collect a portion of the soil, fold your hand with the soil in your hand, throw the already folded soil particle up, loamy soil will fall apart with its particle closely separated.
This will help you make the right choice of soil, after collecting your soil, ensure you treat the soils in other to make the soil germ or insect-free and suitable for the snails.
You can treat the soil using any of the methods discussed in our how to treat soil for snail farming post.
Conclusively, there has been a misunderstanding on which soil is the best soil for snail farming but hopefully, this post has cleared that entirely.
The loamy soil is the best soil for snail farming and you should look out for it for your snail farm, this is because of its distinct properties and composition.
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