Juvenile Helix aspersa snails exposed in field microcosms were used to assess the transfer of Cd, Cu, Ni, Pb and Zn from forest soils amended with liquid and composted sewage sludge. Zn concentrations and contents were significantly higher in snails exposed to liquid and composted sludge after 5 and 7 weeks of exposure, when compared with control. Trends were less clear for the other metals. Present results show that Zn, among the cocktail of metallic trace elements (MTE) coming from sewage sludge disposal, represents the principal concern for food chain transfer and secondary poisoning risks. The microcosm design used in this experiment was well suited for relatively long-term (about 2 months) active biomonitoring with H. aspersa snails. The snails quickly indicated the variations of MTE concentrations in their immediate environment. Therefore, the present study provides a simple but efficient field tool to evaluate MTE bioavailability and transfer.