Hunchbacked conchs jump at the smell of danger | Science News

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Hunchbacked conchs jump at the smell of danger

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10:00am, November 3, 2015
hunchbacked conchs

WHEN CONCHS GET SCARED  Among jumping snails, hunchbacked conchs are some of the most vigorous.

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A whiff of danger makes hunchbacked conchs so jumpy they actually jump.

“A very peculiar movement for a snail,” says Sjannie Lefevre of the University of Oslo in Norway.

Admittedly, the motion of Gibberulus gibberulus gibbosus is less boing-boing and more kerflop-kerflop. But each push-off can send the small, striped conchs in Australia’s Great Barrier Reef several centimeters above the sea bottom and almost a body length (3 or 4 centimeters) forward. They can keep at it too, jumping as many as 100 times in three to five minutes.

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