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Old 09-10-2003, 10:04 PM   #1
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How hardy are hermit crabs and snails?

I have been cycling my tank for almost two weeks now, and I am growing a good crop of diatoms. I would like to add some hermit crabs/snails soon to clean up the tank a little.

When is it safe to add hermit crabs and snails? Do I have to wait a month until the tank is fully cycled? I figure if I wait that long, the algae growth will overwhelm the cleanup crew.

Which of course leads me to my original question: are hermit crabs and snails hardy like damsels, or being invertebrates, are they delicate like starfish?
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Old 09-10-2003, 10:11 PM   #2
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I would say that throwing a few hermit crabs in there would be ok. I had a few (about 15) while my ammonia levels were still pretty high and everyone made it. Snails on the other hand I would say no. At least until the cycle ends, snails are probobly a little too delicate for the tank.
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Old 09-10-2003, 10:12 PM   #3
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They tend to be on the delicate side, but not overly so. I'd wait until your cycle is definitely on the "down" swing - you want ammonia & nitrites to be at zero, and nitrates coming down (and preferably less than 50ppm) before you add snails/hermits.

They should be acclimated slowly, as they are sensitive to rapid changes in salinity/temp & pH. Once properly acclimated, they are easy to keep, as long as your water parameters remain stable, salinity is not too low (1.024 or higher), and they have sufficient food.

Oh yeah - and supply extra shells for the hermits, so they don't kill the snails for their shells.

HTH!
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Old 09-11-2003, 12:06 AM   #4
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Hermit and snails

Make sure your gravity is good when you put the snails in 1.025 . Mine was a little low when i put my first couple in and they died. (water specs were great). Thought id give you that to think about . GOOD LUCK
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