|As available in markets or on the street|
Sunday, 22 May 2016
і Hay Caracoles!
Snail season is upon us and almost every bar and restaurant has them on offer and they match wonderfully with Fino or light Amontillado. Popular since palaeolithic times, snails are full of protein. Of the 125 species which can be found in Andalucía, 49 can be found in Cádiz.
Both their popularity and the human population have grown to the extent that there are worries for their survival. Already some are imported from Morocco. Snails are fussy about the microclimate and are most easily found between April and July when the weather has improved and there is plenty of the vegetation they like to feed on. They are generally nocturnal but can often be found attached to wild olive branches, thistles or stakes which support vine trellising. They have many predators, but the most deadly are humans. Pesticides are a problem too, not only killing snails but potentially poisoning consumers, and there needs to be some sort of control over collection which is often done by the unemployed.