Chinese Mystery Snail

Cipangopaludina chinensis

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Freshwater snail that has an operculum that acts as a lid or trapdoor and seals the shell’s opening; typically has dark green covering similar to moss; color is brownish to olive-green.  A similar species the Japanese Mystery Snail (Cipangopaludina japonica) is also established in Nebraska.  Here is a guide to identify these snails.

Research on Chinese Mystery Snails: 

Thermal tolerance limits of the Chinese mystery snail: Implications for management

Survival and behavior of Chinese mystery snails in response to simulated water body drawdowns and extended air exposure

Bioenergetics and habitat suitability models for the Chinese mystery snail 

Chinese Mystery Snail Ecology and Impacts

Location in Nebraska

They have been found in several reservoirs in Nebraska including: Fremont State Lake #3, Wehrspann, Pawnee, Walnut Creek, Holmes, Wagon Train, Wild Plum, Branched Oak, Mahoney State Park, Hitchcock Park, Biology Pond in Crete, Hedgefield, Halleck Park in Papillon, Big Blue River and the Missouri River near Sioux City.  

Pathway of Introduction and Spread

Introduced through aquarium and Asian food trade, aquarium dumping and accidental release from aquaculture farms. Spread if transported in bait buckets, live wells, bilge, boat hulls/motors/engines, and other equipment.  Learn more about their origin here.

Learn about Chinese mystery snail prevention here.


Can compete with native snail species. Potential vectors for the transmission of parasites and diseases. Shells can clog screens and water intake pipes. Recent research suggest they are filter feeders which can lead to competition with native mollusk and fish species.

Fact Sheet for Chinese Mysterysnail

More information here

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