Scientists Discover a Microsnail So Small That It Fits Inside the Eye of a Sewing Needle

Snail in Needle Eye

Scientists Barna Páll-Gergely and Takahiro Asami from Shinshu University, Matsumoto, Japan, András Hunyadi from Budapest, Hungary, Adrienne Jochum from the University of Bern in Bern, Switzerland have discovered seven new species of land snails, including one so small that it fits inside the eye of a sewing needle. These microsnails were gathered through soil samples from the Guangxi province. Páll-Gergely talked about the questions that came with the discovery of these gastropods with The Guardian.

These are very probably extreme endemic species. If we find them in more than one locality that is somewhat surprising. …We cannot explain their size by adaptation to the environment. For very tiny insects we can guess the evolutionary reason why they evolved like that, but in the case of snails it is much more difficult. The whole family of species are all very small and their common ancestor, which lived maybe 60 million years ago was also very small. Since then this very tiny species survived somehow in different geographical areas and under different climates

Seven Snails

images via Pensoft

via The Guardian