The Snail With the Right Heart Is a children’s book by Maria Popova which talks about the mating rituals of snails. This is a snail in the forest. Close up brown snail (African snail, Achatina fulica) creeps on the of the green moss. Giant snail (Achatina fulica) crawling on green moss

In a recent edition of the seminal internet newsletter Brain Pickings, author Maria Popova shared her experience witnessing the mating ritual of two wolf snails while out for a run in Hawaii. The experience—seeing these small creatures embrace for a few moments—plus her research about the snails’ mating habits after the fact, eventually became the children’s book “The Snail With the Right Heart.”

The Snail With the Right Heart explained how snails make baby snails, and Popova reflected on the challenges of explaining this puzzling topic to children who may not understand it as well as adults.

This is how it happens: When a snail finds a partner, the two face each other, gently touching their tentacles together to feel if they like each other. And if they do, they glide their bodies alongside one another in a slow double embrace, until their baby-making parts fit together like puzzle pieces.”


The newsletter also shows a clip from BBC wherein David Attenborough helps explain how slugs, relatives of snails, mate.

BBC Who Knew Slugs Could Be So Romantic

[…] nourishing and killing plants, surviving in space, inducing visions, producing food, making medicines, manipulating animal behavior, and influencing the composition of the earth’s […]

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