Chinese Mystery Snail

Photo by Ontario's Invading Species Awareness Program

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Common Name: Chinese mystery snail
Scientific Name: Cipangopaludina chinensis
Origin: Asia


Chinese mystery snails are large, golf ball-size snails with a “trapdoor” or operculum.


Chinese mystery snails inhabit lakes and slow moving rivers.


Chinese mystery snails can reach high densities and outcompete native species for food and habitat. They are intermediate hosts for parasitic worms and can transmit trematodes that kill waterfowl. Shells often litter shorelines and clog screens of water intakes.

NYS Threat Ranking Assessment Score = Very High, 83


Once established, very little can be done apart from manual removal for snails. The best method is prevention by cleaning boats, bait buckets, and gear.

Distribution: View Map