Effects of Hurricanes and Droughts
As you all know, "the wetter the better" is the land snail’s motto. We must have a moist environment to live our lives to the fullest. In fact, if conditions get too parched, we will dry out and die.
As we enter the hurricane season, I remind you to beware of drought. The most dangerous droughts occur during the hurricane season.
"Ha!" you might say (that is, if you are young and naïve). “Why should we worry about drought when a hurricane brings way too much water?”
This is why:
Hurricanes also bring tremendous winds. The winds knock down leaves and branches and even trees. Floods carry some of the leaves and debris down the mountain slopes, but a lot remains where it falls. When the sun comes out again, its rays easily reach the forest floor. The debris, leaves and soil become exceedingly hot and dry. They cannot provide the many moist, shady shelters they provided before the hurricane. Land snails are no longer able to live their lives to the fullest.
Sometimes the rains don’t come again for a while. The forest community suffers through a drought. Young snails die almost immediately, and adult snails stop reproducing. If the drought continues, adult snails also die. The snail population within the forest community is tragically reduced.
My tip is this: If you learn a hurricane is coming, slap down that mucus and slide your way to the nearest river or stream. But don’t get too close, or you could be washed downstream by flooding during the storm.