Thursday 27 October 2016

Super-sized slugs population booming thanks to mild weather

Published 29/04/2016 | 08:56

The slug population is booming, Buglife said
The slug population is booming, Buglife said

A generation of sleepless super-sized slugs could ravage vegetable patches this summer thanks to unseasonably mild weather.

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Slugs usually hibernate during the cold months but temperatures have been too high - meaning that the gastropods have been able to reproduce all winter.

Buglife, a conservation charity, said the slug population is booming, with the species laying up to 100 eggs at a time.

One cubic metre of garden could contain up to 200 slugs.

The slugs are also bigger than usual because the mild weather has improved the food supply, and they are said to be reproducing at a faster rate.

Matt Shardlow, chief executive of Buglife, said: "Due to climate shifts, warmer winters and wetter summers, we're seeing slugs become active all year round.

"Whereas key predators like amphibians will only lay their eggs once a year, slugs are not so restricted.

"Coupled with the fact that general slug varieties are also reaching full size earlier than ever, gardeners are simply not getting any respite and need innovative management solutions."

Press Association

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