Chinese Mystery Snail – Oneida County Aquatic Invasive Species Program

Chinese Mystery Snail (Bellamya chinensis)

Identification: Large globose shell with 6 -7 whorls. It has light coloration as a juvenile and can range from olive green to reddish/dark brown colored as an adult. It can reach 65 mm tall.

Ecology and Natural History: The Chinese mystery snail’s native range spreads from Southeast Asia to Japan and Eastern Russia. It has invaded many states, as shown in the map below.The species was introduced through freshwater aquarium trade and the Chinese food market. It prefers to live in still waterbodies with silt, sand, or muck substrate, but they can also survive in slow regions of streams. The Chinese mystery snail feeds on organic and inorganic bottom material as well as algae. Females live up to five years while males live up to three years. Females usually produce over 170 young in their lifetime. Chinese mystery snails live in shallow water from spring until fall. In fall, they move to deeper water to overwinter away from the shore.

Impact of Introduction: They have been known to clog screens of water intake pipes. Chinese mystery snails have the potential to be a vector for the transmission of parasites and diseases.

Oneida County Waterbodies with Chinese Mystery Snails:  Aldridge Lake, Alva Lake, Bear Lake, Bearskin Lake, Big Carr Lake, Big Fork Lake, Big Lake, Big Stone Lake, Booth Lake, Buckskin Lake, Buffalo Lake, Carrol Lake, Chain Lake, Clear Lake, Cranberry Lake, Cunard Lake, Dam Lake, Deer Lake, Dog Lake, Dorothy Lake, East Horsehead Lake, Fourth Lake, George Lake, Gilmore Lake, Ginty Lake, Hat Rapids Flowage, Hodstradt Lake, Horsehead Lake, Indian Lake, Island Lake, Jennie Webber Lake, Johnson Lake, Julia Lake, Kathan Lake, Katherine Lake, Kawaguesaga Lake, Lake Julia, Lake Nokomis, Lake Samway, Lake Thompson, Laurel Lake, Little Bearskin Lake, Little Tomahawk Lake, Lone Stone Lake, Madeline Lake, Manson Lake, Maple Lake, Medicine Lake, Meta Lake, Mid Lake, Mildred Lake, Minocqua Lake, Moccasin Lake, Moen Lake, Muskellunge Lake, North Nokomis Lake, Nose Lake, Oneida Lake, Paradise Lake, Pelican Lake, Perch Lake, Pickerel Lake, Pier Lake, Planting Ground Lake, Rainbow Flowage, Rhinelander Flowage, Rocky Run Flowage, Sand Lake, Shishebogama Lake, Spirit Lake, Squash Lake, Squaw Lake, Squirrel Lake, Stella Lake, Stone Lake, Sunday Lake, Swamsauger Lake, Sweeny Lake, Third Lake, Thunder Lake, Tom Doyle Lake, Tomahawk Lake, Townline Lake, Two Sisters Lake, Upper Post Lake, Virgin Lake, Washburn Lake, Whitefish Lake, Willow Flowage, and the Wisconsin River.

Do you think your lake has Chinese mystery snails? Contact us to schedule a visit to your lake for confirmation.