A Giant Land Snail endemic to the Sao Tome and Principe Islands.
It is listed, by the IUCN Red List, as vulnerable and is rapidly declining. In fact, recent studies find that this status must be reassessed because wild populations are really rare ( Panisi et al, in prep.), being confined to remote areas of the Obô Natural Park, Sao Tome and Principe.
There are three main drivers of its decline:
1. Destruction of its natural habitat, due to the growing demand of wood, for construction, and fields, for plantations.
2. Overharvesting, for human consumption as food and traditional medicine.
3. Introduction of invasive species, particularly of the West African Giant Land Snail (Archachatina marginata).
Up until around the 1980´s, the Obô Snail was the only Giant Land Snail in Sao Tome and Principe. It is an endemic to these islands, meaning that it only exists here.
Introduction of the West African Giant Land Snail (Archachatina marginata). It might have been brought to these islands by accident, in cargo ships, or on purpose as a food source.
The introduced giant snail is now an important food source and is rapidly spreading all over the country.
At the same time, the Obô Snail is disappearing from lower grounds.
The introduced giant snail has spread across the island of Sao Tome, with the exception of the deeper forest of the Obô Natural Park, while the Obô Snail has virtually disappeared, being only found on the Obô Natural Park.
Beginning of the Forest Giants project.
Creation of a Conservation Center for the Obô Snail
People are part of the solution to this problem, and particularly the santomean living in communities close to the Obô Natural Park, the Obô Snail natural habitat.
On a first stage our project aims to raise awareness among these people.
Click here to learn more about our program with people.
Monte Café, São Tomé Island, São Tomé and Príncipe
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