This is an archival story that predates current editorial management.
This archival content was written, edited, and published prior to LAist's acquisition by its current owner, Southern California Public Radio ("SCPR"). Content, such as language choice and subject matter, in archival articles therefore may not align with SCPR's current editorial standards. To learn more about those standards and why we make this distinction, please click here.
U.S. Customs Ruins Someone's Dinner Party By Destroying 67 Gigantic Snails In Picnic Baskets
The U.S. Customs and Border Patrol at LAX found 67 giant (and hazardous) West African land snails on a plane en route from Lagos, Nigeria to San Dimas. The 67 snails weighed a total of 35 pounds and as you can see, one is about the size of a kitten. These land snails can live up to a decade, and can grow to be eight inches long.
The snails were discovered in two picnic baskets on July 7, but reports of the find just came out Monday, CBS reports. Apparently, the snails, which are considered a West African delicacy, were meant to be eaten.
Unfortunately, the snails are also dangerous to both humans and plants. They will eat any sort of plant that is available to them (and the paint and stucco off a house), and they can also carry parasites, one of which can cause meningitis.
All 67 snails were incinerated, but it appears the person who ordered the snails will not be charged as people who do not know they're ordering a banned item will usually not be penalized. However, somebody's exotic dinner party is just ruined.