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Banana Slug Biology
Guest lecture by John Pearse and Janet Leonard, from Long Marine Laboratory, University of California-Santa Cruz. They did research on Banana Slugs for several years and talked about their findings in the class.
John talked about habitat, color, general characteristics, predators, and taxonomy of hermaphrodites. Janet talked mostly about sexual behavior of slugs.
Habitat : Banana Slugs are slimy, spineless gastropods which live on forest floor in moist places. They are part of animals of forest of North West. They are also found in conifer forest, open forest, and unexpected habitats like UC Davis reserve dry area, and also in Springs. Pacific grove has lots of ice plants in which Banana Slugs live.
Diet : Banana Slugs eat feces. They are fond of mushrooms, but it is not their major diet. In labs they are fed lettuce.
Color : They are mostly yellow in color, but they are also found in brown, and black colors.
Predators : Raccoons, garter snakes, ducks, geese and salamanders sometimes eat banana slugs.
Taxonomy : Banana Slug belongs to genus Ariolimax. Three species are included in these genus : A. californicus, A. columbianus, and A. dolichophallus.