British media say some miniature snails have been found in China's Guangxi Province. They are about one tenth the size of the eye of a needle.
According to the guardian website on September 28th, their shells are only 0.86mm high. The researchers believe they are the smallest terrestrial snail ever found.
The snails are visible to the naked eye but difficult to recognize, the report said. The study was published in the Journal biokey.
One of the authors of the study, Barna & middot; PAL gergley, a scientist at the University of Honshu in Japan, said he was excited to find these 'really small' snails.
The smallest ever 'mini snails' were found when researchers collected soil samples from the bottom of limestone in Guangxi Province. They say the snails may be native to the area, and their closest relative lives in Thailand, about 621 miles away.
The tiny size of the snails is more difficult to explain by evolution, Parr gergley said.
"We can't explain their size in terms of adaptation," he added. For very small insects, we can guess why they evolved like this, but for snails, it's hard to guess. All snails in this family are very small, and their common ancestor, probably 60 million years ago, is also very small. Since then, this very small species has survived in different geographical locations and climates. '
He said it was impossible to find smaller snails because the organs and cells of snails could not be smaller, and snails need the least number of cells to survive.