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Effect of inbreeding on viability and longevity of edible snail Helix aspersa

The effect of inbreeding on longevity and viability (intervals of 0-30, 30-60, 60-90, and 90-120 days of birth) in three consecutive generations of full sibs of escargot Helix aspersa raised under laboratory conditions (20-25ºC temperature; 70-90% relative humidity) was studied. Inbreeding effects decreased the viability for all the studied intervals. The longevity means were 314 and 306 days, respectively to the first and third generations. Hibernating animals were not observed. Population size of at least 100 non-related mating escargots replaced after 10 generations to avoid inbreeding effect is recommended.

Helix aspersa; edible snail; inbreeding; viability; lifespan

Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais, Escola de Veterinária Caixa Postal 567, 30123-970 Belo Horizonte MG - Brazil, Tel.: (55 31) 3409-2041, Tel.: (55 31) 3409-2042 - Belo Horizonte - MG - Brazil