Terrestrial Snail Egg Case
Data: I am trying to identify the snails that made these egg cases in my backyard in Seattle Washington. I found the cases in the ground in a shady place in early September. At first they are closed, but in a few days they open on top as you see in the photo. I looked at the little "eggs" under a microscope (I am a biology teacher), and they seem to be baby snails. I've never seen snails in my yard before, only slugs.
Any ideas? Thanks
Send Ideas to: Fayla
After much thinking about the
whole thing and reading everyone's comments, I remembered an interesting
fungus that I saw only once, called a birds nest fungus (Cyathus
stercoreus). That is exactly what I have here. The reason I was
not thinking fungus was that the small structures inside the cups are
much too large to be fungal spores - but birds nest fungi have their
spores in little packets called peridioles, and that is what I'm seeing.
The soft flexible "bodies" extending from the peridioles are
an attachment to the side of the cup that deteriorates as the fungus