28 February 2011

First Megapallifera of the year

On 2 occasions earlier in this month when the weather was rainy and unseasonably warm, I searched for the local native slug Megapallifera mutabilis in the woods. But the slugs were not out yet. Late this afternoon as another warm and rainy day came to close, we did another search. This time they were out in throngs. In about 20 minutes I collected 12 of them from the trunks of beech trees. This slug was indeed the very 1st one I saw.

I brought the slugs home and weighed them. The data will be incorporated into my ongoing research project on the annual population cycle of this species.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Yay! The slugs have declared it Spring, at least in Maryland!

People used to celebrate the first Robin of Spring. Now so many Robins stay all year round, it seems only fair that this handsome species of slug should take on the mantle of Harbinger of the Green Season!

Susan J. Hewitt