Customs Officials Put The Kibosh On Literal Snail Mail

Image courtesy of U.S. Customs & Border Protection

It doesn’t have to be a slow news day to get a chuckle out of the news that U.S Customers and Border Protection officials recently stopped a shipment of literal snail mail from entering the country.

CBP agriculture specialists in Philadelphia were inspecting packages at Philadelphia International Airport earlier this month when they discovered seven pounds of live snails in parcels that were supposed to contain shoes and honey.

Officials quarantined the snails and sent specimens to the local U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) entomologist for identification. The experts there identified the snails as Eobania vermiculata (Muller) (Helicidae), a terrestrial snail also known as the “chocolate-banded snail.”

According to the Texas Invasive Species Institute, these little guys are a considered a potentially serious threat”: An invasive species native to the Mediterranean region, they’re known to do some real damage to garden plants, vineyards, and other agriculture crops.

If only someone could figure out a way to turn them into tasty empanadas.

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