You know too well that slugs eat plants, right? After all, it’s rare that a garden can avoid the damage that slugs cause. But what else do slugs eat? Do slugs eat meat and human foods too?
Yes, slugs do eat meat. Their diet consists mainly of plant-based items but will resort to eating meat to survive.
Since slugs are so fond of plants and vegetation, it comes as a surprise to people that they also eat meat.
Slugs are essentially scavengers and consume dead matter. Some slugs are carnivores. These slugs feed on other slugs and snails. Other than the vegetation in your garden, slugs will also feed on meat.
Are Slugs Herbivores?
Many land slugs which we find in our gardens are herbivores for a large part. These slugs are known to enjoy plant leaves. Sugs will also consume the vegetables and fruits in your garden.
However, there are certain species of slugs that are omnivores. This means that the slugs consume both plants and meat. Slugs are known to be scavengers as they eat dead matter.
Are Slugs Carnivores?
Over time, slugs have evolved to become carnivores for survival purposes. It depends, however, on the kind of slug we are talking about. Different species of slugs can be carnivores, herbivores, or omnivores.
Slugs are scavengers and will feed on dead matter. This means they can be cannibalistic as they eat dead slugs.
Do Slugs Eat Slug Corpses?
Slugs are cannibals, which means they eat other slugs. When a slug dies, you will soon notice that live slugs will follow. The live slugs smell the dead slug and come to eat it. In addition to eating the dead of their kind, slugs will also eat other dead animals.
What Do Garden Slugs Eat?
If you deal with garden slugs, most of them will be omnivores. Slugs love to eat tender or young plants. Therefore, it would be best to avoid planting some of them or protect them beforehand, so slugs do not cause damage.
Slugs love chomping on green leaves such as lettuces and salad leaves. These leaves are tender, and the smooth texture makes it convenient for slugs to slide on. Usually, when consuming these leaves, slugs will leave their residue on them. Therefore, when you consume your greens, you must wash them thoroughly rid of slug residue.
In addition to green leaves, slugs love young celery plants. You can still grow these celery plants in your garden. However, it would be best to get mature ones because you may not control slug damage on the young ones. The other option is to grow them undercover initially.
Slugs like to consume vegetables too, and one of their favourites is cucumbers. However, small cucumbers are more susceptible to slug attacks than larger ones.
While most herbs are known to keep slugs away, some attract them. Some of the herbs which slugs love to eat are dill, basil and parsley.
You will also find that slugs like to eat flowers. Slugs do not like strong smells; therefore, some flowers can be too fragrant for them. However, some flowers susceptible to slug attacks include marigolds, hostas, dahlias and petunias.
What Don’t Slugs Eat?
Knowing about plants and vegetables which slugs like to eat is extremely beneficial as a gardener. However, it is also essential to know what slugs do not like.
There are certain vegetables that slugs do not like to eat. For instance, large cucumbers, chives, asparagus, garlic and tomatoes.
In addition, slugs do not like powerful smells. Therefore, these slimy pests detest some herbs because of their smell. Slugs do not like coriander, lavender, sage and rosemary. You can use this knowledge to create barriers around susceptible plants.
Over the years, slugs have evolved and developed important characteristics to stay alive. Largely, slugs are herbivores, as they consume the plants in our garden. However, slugs also do eat meat.
These slimy pests are scavengers and eat dead matter. Other than that, slugs also eat their kind when they die. Some larger species of slugs are carnivores and will eat other slugs and snails.
The garden slugs you find are mostly omnivores. Therefore, you will find these slugs feeding on all sorts of plants like lettuce, strawberries, flowers like hostas and even some herbs. You can either grow plants that slugs love and use them as a trap plant or you can avoid growing them altogether.
In addition, it would help if you have plants that slugs dislike in your garden to keep them away such as strong-smelling herbs and flowers.
Ryan is a keen gardener from the UK who’s spent years dealing with countless, common pests over the years so knows the ins and outs of how to deal with pests in the garden