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Old 07-02-2008, 04:34 PM   #1
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Hermits Eating My Snails?

Initially my two hermits were too tiny to turn over and attack my snails, but one especially larger hermit (he's already left his old shell behind for a bigger one) has gotten HUGE in just one month and has apparently eaten two of my small turbos. He's about 1/2 inch now. How much larger will this hermit get?
I've dropped in plenty of empty snail shells into the tank, and the one he's using now is one I got in the Caribbean, which is cool, but he's rampaging! What can I do to protect my snails? I already drop in half a cube of Mysis Shrimp each day which should be plenty for three fish and two hermits...I think! HELP!
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Old 07-02-2008, 04:57 PM   #2
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Sometimes the hermits will go after the snails. I`ve seen it before. Mine have not but Others have said they saw the same thing. Just make sure you dont over feed the tank for the hermits. You dont want to foul up the tank.
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Old 07-06-2008, 09:21 AM   #3
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i've witnessed hermits kill snails just for the heck of it. they didn't even eat them or take the shells. i've also seen hermits change their shells 3 times in 1 week. it's just instinct i'm afraid.
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Old 07-15-2008, 10:34 AM   #4
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Well, it's official...my hermit crab is attacking my snails and killing them off. Noidea why, since I have dropped in plenty of large shells for him to use if he needs them. I actually have two hermits, but one has just exploded size-wise for some reason and is already looking to outgrow his 2nd shell.
Anyway, I guess I post this mostly as a warning to be careful of mixing hermits with snails in your tank. My experience has been that the hermits are turning over the snails and killing them off. From 10 snails, I am down to 4 live ones. I find them upside down and dead in the mornings in the middle of the tank. Mix the two with caution.
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Old 07-15-2008, 11:12 AM   #5
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It can happen. I try to get the dwarf hermits that dont get too big. Why not trade them in for some smaller ones at your lfs.
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Old 07-15-2008, 11:23 AM   #6
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I might try that Melosu. I am vry disappointed that this is happening. It's not just the turning over of the snails, it's that they are intact and dead inside in the morning. My water parameters are fine, and a predator would've eaten the snail, so it has to be the big hermit I have in there
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Old 07-15-2008, 11:32 AM   #7
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Have you actually seen them flipping them over? Caught them in the act?

Reason I ask is that snails can be clumsy and will often times fall off the glass, or fall off the rock. When they land upside down, they often times can't right themselves. If they don't get flipped back right-side up, they'll die naturally. THEN, the crabs and nassarius snails will move in for the feast. I've seen that happen numerous times in my tank. Then other times they haven't feasted, and there's just a dead, upside down snail in my tank... like you describe.
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Old 07-15-2008, 11:40 AM   #8
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Put him in the refugeum, man.. lol That will take care our your problem.
I had a killer Coral Banded shrimp in the main tank that was killing everything as well as my pretty butterfly fishes. I thought that he was originally cleaning the fish, but he turned out to be trying to eat them lol... He killed almost everything in my tank before I had the sump and refugeum installed. Make sure you have rubble rock, plants and sand in your refugeum and you can stick almost anything in there. At least that way, you won't have to get rid of the crab..
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Old 07-15-2008, 11:45 AM   #9
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Thanks guys, honestly...I appreciate all the insights for a newb like myself.
I haven't seen the crabs turn over the snails, but I do see that they turn over all the other shells in the tank. I did see one hermit picking at an upside down snail once and I pulled it off...not that that action taught the crab anything I righted the snail and it was dead. I can't say that the crab had killed it. Maybe it was upside down and dead already. I'm just alarmed that 60% of my snails have met their demise in my tank in just two months. As slimy as they are, I actually dig snails.
Is there any chance that I don't have enough algae for them to feed on? My tank seems to be almost spotless of algae.
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Old 07-15-2008, 11:57 AM   #10
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Is there any chance that I don't have enough algae for them to feed on? My tank seems to be almost spotless of algae.
I was going to mention this. You've got a new tank, so you don't need much in the way of a cleanup crew. Seems like I remember you have something like a 20g? And you had 10 snails to start with? In my opinion, that's a lot of snails for a brand new 20g. You could just be seeing your little ecosystem balancing itself out. And then there's also the fact that not all snails make it after acclimation and slowly die.
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