Chesapeake Bay Introduced Species Database

Myosotella myosotis

Common name(s):
salt marsh snail
Myosotella myosotis is a small brown salt marsh snail, native to Europe (British Isles, Mediterranean, etc.), that is sometimes called the mouse-ear marsh snail. It has been introduced into several locations including the East Coast of North America from Nova Scotia to the West Indies, the US west coast from Washington to California, South Africa, Australia, and New Zealand. Introduction of this snail could have occurred by several means including, dry ballast (rocks and dirt used for weight on old sailing vessels), the oyster trade, and discarded packing material. Once these snails have been introduced to a new location their local range expansion is limited, thus their distribution remains spotty for years after introduction. These snails were first reported in Chesapeake Bay in 1900 in St. Leonard?s Creek, a Patuxent River tributary. But over the years they have shown up in several other locations including Fisherman's Island (Northampton Co), VA, at the mouth of the Bay, Norfolk, VA marshes, Crisfield, MD, and the Little Annemessex River in Maryland. Along the Atlantic Coast they have been reported in Chincoteague, Watt's Bay, Willis Wharf, and Hog Island Bay, VA. No negative impacts have been reported.
Image courtesy of Auguste Le Roux.


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National Estuarine and Marine Exotic Species Information System

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