There are at least 40 species of slugs in the U.S. alone.
Slugs feed on plant leaves and can be a nuisance in gardens. They love to eat tender new growth on plants, seedlings, lettuce, delphiniums, and hostas. They are nocturnal feeders. Damage is noticed the next day on plants or when slime trails are visible. The slug can follow any slime trail left from the night before; the trails make a highway straight to the plants.
Here are some more facts about slugs:
- Slugs can be found under rocks, flower pots, and in other damp locations.
- They are soft-bodied, but actually have small shells on the interior of their flesh on their back.
- Slugs range in length from ¼" to 10". They have eye stalks that look like antennae.
- Slugs have both male and female reproductive organs.
- They lay their eggs in the soil, just about everywhere. The eggs can remain for years, waiting for the right cool, moist conditions to hatch.
- To identify their eggs, look for oval-shaped white clusters of two dozen or more under rocks, clumps of dirt, or under boards or rotting leaves or debris.
- Adults overwinter in the soil and can live for many years if not stopped.