Buster is a garden snail (Helix aspersa). Buster lives in a terrarium with Hercules, the milk snail (Otala lactea). Buster and Hercules get along great.
Buster is big. It is possible Buster is the subspecies H. aspersa maxima; my research is inconclusive at this time.
Behold Buster. He is on a standard CD to give a sense of scale. (All pics taken by D.)
It was interesting how Buster became almost hypnotized by the strobe lights firing with every shot. After the first few shots, he remained motionless on the CD for several minutes, not even so much as wiggling his eyestalks in between shots. He barely responded to a piece of cucumber placed by what passes for his nose.
Initially I had worried that he wouldn't stay on the CD and would want to crawl his way off the table, forcing me to spend most of the shoot wrangling him back onto the CD. But after a while I began to get a little concerned that he wasn't trying to crawl off the table. I know snails move slowly, but they do move, and Buster wasn't. At all.
Fortunately, he seemed to wake up a little bit when I slid him gently off the CD and onto my hand when we were done. There was a thick patch of slime where he'd parked himself on the CD that took some effort to wash off.
Who knew a snail could be hypnotized? I wonder if natural lightning during a thunderstorm has the same effect on snails in the wild?