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Old 04-22-2022, 12:06 AM   #1
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10 gallon snail infestation. At my wits end.

I setup a planted 10 gallon back in November. I started up the hobby again after downsizing from a 55 gallon planted tank. I followed all setup and cycling procedures to the tee. I insured I did hydrogen peroxide dips on all plants entering the tank and also insured that the substrate was washed thoroughly. Despite my best efforts, I ended up with a few snails, and now I'm up to what seems like 100 (possibly more). It's getting to be too much for me to manage and I'm thinking about cutting my losses, donating the fish, and tearing down the tank.

Steps taken:
  • Manual removal from the top of the tank daily. No matter how many I remove, there seem to be just as many the following day.
  • A Sera snail trip. I had it shipped from overseas since I saw great results on YouTube but I only caught 10 or so each time.
  • A strict copper treatment and testing. I used Seachem Cupramine and tested daily. No luck in eliminating snails over the course of a few months.
  • Today I had a breaking point when I introduced an assassin snail and discovered (in my complete ignorance and stupidly) that my betta would attack it. Poor guy didn't last a few hours before I found an empty shell.

Am I out of luck here? Right now, the tank is a complete eye sore and is very difficult to keep up. Even after thorough cleanings, the centerpiece of the tank seems to be the excessive amount of pest snails.

Should I throw in the towel, relocate my betta, and tear down the tank? Any last measures I should take?

Thanks in advance!

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Old 04-22-2022, 10:37 AM   #2
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Wow, you have really been through a lot. I sympathize. I went through something similar a few years ago and ended up at my wit's end, doing exactly what you are suggesting at the end of your post. If it were me, I'd start anew with the betta and tear down this "trouble tank". If you go for live plants again, my tip would be to start with just 2-3, wash them under running water and gently massage (feel) for snails; then if you see any, yank the plants and try new ones. In exasperation, silk plants make bettas happy too.
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Old 04-25-2022, 07:38 AM   #3
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No need to give up. A ten gallon is not a problem to clean up... correct? The betta can very comfortably be in a temporary small tank or even a 5-gallon bucket you can get for a couple of dollars while you clean the tank. The live plants will probably be a problem bringing the snails back to the tank.
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Old 04-25-2022, 12:11 PM   #4
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Id suggests removing any little jelly blobs you see. Its possible they are laying eggs. As long as you keep removing adults eventually you'll get rid of them. Options, buy a crayfish and remove betta for a while, let the crayfish feast on the eggs all night. Pea puffers, plecos, larger assassin snail, cut down on food given to betta.
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Old 04-25-2022, 02:36 PM   #5
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I've successfully kept Java Loaches in a 10g Betta tank. It might be a bit small for them, but a Pangio loach is a very good control for snails. Make sure they have hiding places, they're nocturnal, and eat the snails at night. They can burrow, but I've never had them do it in my tanks. The Betta didn't attack them, but it depends on the Betta. They need mature tanks, but you'd be surprised how hardy they are. I've had them thrive in newly setup tanks. I once had a 33g Sorority tank, with 5 Java Loaches, and MTS to keep the sand safe. The loaches never burrowed in the sand like they're supposed to, but they made a pile of empty shells.
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