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Uploaded:2017-06-22
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Squeaks just found some animals crawling around outside in the garden!

Want to show them to me, Squeaks? Ooo, it looks like this one is a snail.

And this one is a slug! You know, even though snails and slugs are two different kinds of animals, they're actually pretty similar! Squeaks, can you spot anything about the snail and the slug that looks the same?

That's true! Both of these animals have long bodies with no legs. Snails and slugs move by using a big muscle on the bottom of their body called a foot.

It definitely doesn’t look like my foot! But it helps snails and slugs get around just like my feet help me get around. The front half of a snail or slug’s foot will stretch out far along the ground, then pull the whole animal along with it as it squeezes back together.

What else do you see that looks the same? That’s right, both slugs and snails have their eyes on long stalks that can stretch out and wiggle around. I wonder what the world would look like with eyes on stalks!

Oh, you thought of another thing that's the same? Yeah! These animals are both very slimy!

Both snails and slugs are covered in a special slime called mucus, which is a lot like the boogers in your nose. This mucus helps snails and slugs to stay wet and avoid drying out. Just like the boogers keep your nose from drying out!

Snails and slugs can also use this mucus to help them stick to things. They can use it to climb up walls, or on tree trunks, or up big rocks! They even leave a little slime trail behind themselves.

So, snails and slugs have a lot in common. Which makes sense, because they’re actually related! Snails and slugs are all part of a big group of animals called gastropods.

Gastropods tend to have a lot of similarities, like a muscular foot, eyes on stalks, and slime. But different kinds of gastropods can also be very different, just like our snail and slug here. There’s one big difference I’m noticing.

Do you see it? [Squeaks nods] That’s right, this snail has a hard shell on its back! Snails have round shells that get bigger as they grow up. Snails carry their shells with them wherever they go, and they can even hide inside their shells when they need to get away from other animals that might want to meet them.

Slugs don’t have these shells, but they protect themselves by hiding under rocks or logs. Some of them can also move faster than snails can with those heavy shells on their backs. There are so many kinds of snails and slugs, it’s a little hard to imagine how many there are!

There are over 65,000 kinds of gastropods, and they're all different! The Australian Trumpet Snail is the biggest snail in the world. It can grow to almost a meter long — that's three feet!

Trumpet snails are so big, they can weigh as much as a small dog. There’s also a whole group of gastropods known for their bright colors. These sea slugs, called nudibranchs, come in every color of the rainbow, sometimes all at once!

Their bright colors can help them to stand out and attract other nudibranchs. And check out this banana slug! Banana slugs are yellow with brown spots, and they look just like, you guessed it, a banana.

Since they live on land, banana slugs aren’t surrounded by water like sea slugs. But do you remember their special mucus? It helps them to stick to things, but it also helps them to avoid drying out on land!

That’s good, because banana slugs can actually breathe through their skin! So gastropods are pretty incredible! These snails and slugs lead such different lives, but they’re still all part of the same big family.

Thanks for joining us for this episode of SciShow Kids! If you want to watch more videos with me and Squeaks and you’re watching this on YouTube, you can click the red subscribe button. We’ll see you next time here at the fort!