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Speak up for the Mojave Desert's mountain snails

Action: Wildlife Conservation

August 9, 2016   Action Alert ID# 408

 

The Mohave shoulderband snail is a tiny tan-and-pink snail that lives on just a few mountaintops in the Mojave Desert of Southern California. Its entire global range is less than eight square miles. Shoulderband snails have survived their extreme desert environment for tens of thousands of years, but their future is now threatened by climate change, industrial wind development, and mining.

The Center for Biological Diversity is working to gain Endangered Species Act protection for the snail and to develop a conservation plan to ensure its survival. As a first step, we need the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to fund biological surveys to determine the snail's range and critical habitat needs.

Snails aren't charismatic; they lack the graceful flight of birds, the muscles of jaguars, and the eye-catching patterns of giraffes. But snails play critical roles in building and maintaining the web of life, and they deserve our help. They decompose vegetative litter, recycle nutrients, build soils and provide food and calcium for many other animals including birds, amphibians, reptiles, small mammals and other invertebrates. They also help disperse seeds and fungi. Empty snail shells are used as shelters and egg-laying sites by insects and other arthropods. Snail shells return calcium to the soil and are the primary calcium source for the eggs of some bird species.

August 9, 2016   Action Alert ID# 408

 

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