Vermglss (1)

This mammal is similar to the previous species (and it is no wonder, they are close relatives!), but it lives mainly in damp places – in tropical woods and thickets of bushes on river banks. The reason is, that the food of snailer lives here - this animal eats basically snails of various species. For eating of such food at snailer the special adaptation was developed: on the end of its tongue horn thorns directed back have appeared. It permits to take spineless invertebrates from their refuges and shells. The muzzle of snailer in connection with difference in diet became much shorter than at wormtonguer, and teeth are advanced very poorly and submitted by one pair of molars (with very thin layer of enamel) in each jaw. 

As against to extremely ground-dwelling wormtonguer, the snailer uses various biotopes for life. More often this animal meets among trees in damp tropical rainforest. It perfectly swarms up trees: fingers of snailer are thin and sensitive similarly to fingers of primates. But they are armed with sharp claws, permitting to cling, clamber and if necessary to break rotten wood. Tail of snailer is rather flexible and partly prehensile. Colouring of this mammal is very contrast, cryptic: the forward part of body (head, shoulders and chest) is colored black, back one is light grey, almost white. On forepaws of animal there are white “gloves” up to elbows and on waist and basis of tail – black round stains. The tail of animal partly imitates colouring of some wood snakes that protects animal from predators. This species eats spineless invertebrates – larvae, worms and snails. Snailer is able to break rotten tree and to take by tongue from burrows larvae of capricorn beetles. Animal determines their presence, sniffing at apertures, bored by larvae in wood. The most usual catch of this animal includes ground snails making over half of its diet. Snailer takes them from shell, having cut edge of mollusc body by claw of the thumb near the edge. After that animal pins snail body on tongue, having pushed it in shell deeply to all coils, and by one jerk takes mollusc meat entirely, has left shell empty. If it is a little number of ground snails in its habitat, animals from populations living near to rivers can dive into water, catching water snails. Having pulled out from water such catch, snailer carefully shakes off, and then deals with mollusc. Usually water snails, as against to ground ones, have protective corneous operculum on their shells. Snailer cuts its contractor by claw and then eats mollusc. Snailers are solitary territorial animals. But as against to wormtonguers they eat more accessible and various forage therefore they do not have sharp intraspecific competition, and they are more tolerant concern to presence of neighbours. As well as wormtonguer, snailer breeds some times per one year. Two times per year female gives rise to 5 – 6 cubs. Male finds female in its territory (usually it is the male from the fodder site located near), and some time both animals keep and fed together. Pairing repeats some times but when female will feel approach of pregnancy, it banishes male. Cubs are born naked and blind, but grow quickly. At monthly age they actively study world around, observing for mother and founding food under her supervision. And at the age of three months they become completely independent. At the age of one and half years female is capable to bear posterity. Life expectancy of snailer is usually rather short – no more than 8 years. Obviously, it is connected with fact that adult animals are practically without exception infected with helminths, receiving them from forage – ground snails.

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