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One-fifth of gardeners admit throwing snails over fence

A fifth of gardeners admit to throwing snails over the fence into their neighbour's garden to get rid of them, a survey has revealed.

The poll for the Royal Horticultural Society found 80% of people will be heading into their gardens this Easter to tackle spring jobs such as weeding and mowing the lawn.

Neighbours admit to throwing snails into each other's gardens. Credit: Waltraud Grubitzsch/DPA/Press Association Images

The survey of more than 1,500 people to mark National Gardening Week this week also found that good gardeners make good neighbours, with just 3% admitting to growing plants to block out their neighbours' gardens.

But while almost four fifths (78%) said they had never thrown a snail into their neighbour's garden, 22% admitted to the horticultural crime.

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Snail's pace revealed in new study

Scientists examined the habits of 450 garden snails recording their movements. Credit: Be Lungworm Aware/PA Wire

Snails can explore the length of an average British garden in a single night - reaching a top speed of one metre per hour, a new study reveals.

Scientists examined the habits of 450 garden snails recording their movements using LED lights, UV paints and time-lapse photography.

The findings revealed how snails will travel distances of up to 25 metres in a 24-hour period, and seek out areas of shelter, such as long grass, trees or objects, including dogs' toys, left in the garden overnight.

The four researchers from Exeter University also discovered that snails move in convoys, piggy-backing on the slime of other snails to conserve energy.

The study was commissioned as a resource for dog owners, whose pets are at risk from a potentially fatal parasite spread by slugs and snails, the lungworm Angiostrongylus vasorum.

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