Snails take their time

Snails are the ultimate example of being slow. Nevertheless it was claimed this week that snails are the animals that reproduce most quickly.  Radio EenVandaag wanted to know whether this was true and consulted behaviour biologist and snail specialist Joris Koene. He debunks this statement by explaining how long and complicated the mating behaviour of land snails really is, taking 4 to 6 hours and including a courtship ritual that involves so-called love darts. While they do lay quite some eggs, not all of the hatchlings make it to adulthood. So, interesting animals but definitely not the most efficient reproducers.