Alien invasion? Relax, they're just snail eggs
TENS of thousands of alien-like pink eggs sprouted overnight on the banks of Whampoa River last weekend, much to the surprise of residents.
According to Chinese newspaper Lianhe Wanbao, residents woke up on Saturday to the never-before-seen sight of the canal walls blanketed with clusters of tiny, elongated blobs, which some have described as "raspberries".
Others fretted that the blobs would affect the water quality.
One expert interviewed by the paper identified the clusters as the eggs of a type of freshwater snail: the Pomacea canaliculata.
Also known as the channeled apple snail or golden apple snail, the freshwater animal originated from South America.
It is listed among the top 100 world's worst invasive alien species.
According to the Global Invasive Species Database, the snail was introduced to South-east Asia around 1980 as a food source, but later became a crop pest, particularly as it feeds on rice.
On average, each cluster has 200 to 300 eggs, although some clusters are known to contain up to 1,000 eggs.
The snails usually lay the eggs on solid surfaces up to about 50cm above the water surface. The eggs hatch in one to two weeks.