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Old 04-24-2009, 02:23 PM   #1
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Apple Snail Shell problems

I had two apple snails in a 45 gallon tank. They have produced baby snails ever since getting into the tank. Well I noticed today that one of the bigger snails has died and it looks as though it has holes throughout its shell. They both look roughed up or as though their is a calcium defficeny in their shells. There is quite a few rocks and stuff to bang off of and they were constantly harassed by the tiger barbs. Also I have four yo yo loaches in the tank and they do a good job with the exception of one small snail in eating them. They have however left the two bigger ones alone. Any clue as to why the sudden death and the shell being almost white? The snail was little over 6 months and is actually one of the original baby snails from another hatching.
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Old 04-24-2009, 06:20 PM   #2
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I have the same trouble with my snails (rams-horns) and I'm starting to think maybe pH. Mines a constant 6.8 in that tank. I have two other tanks with no plants in them and the snails proliferate just fine, too fine really, I've got to stop feeding so much.
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Old 04-24-2009, 06:37 PM   #3
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Snails need calcium in the water to build the shell. Acidic water will produce the holes & weak shells you described. You want a pH of at least mid 7 & GH/KH in the order of 100-200 ppm.
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Old 04-24-2009, 10:46 PM   #4
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I agree snails need calcium. Do you have a water softner? I had a huge snail die off when I added a water softner, there was no hardness in the water. I added a bypass to the softner and do my water changes with bypassed water. No more snail die off.
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Old 04-24-2009, 11:17 PM   #5
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My water is at 6.9 is there a calcium deposit that I can add to the water?
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Old 04-25-2009, 12:51 AM   #6
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Crushed coral or aragonite should work
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Old 04-25-2009, 01:03 AM   #7
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Can you just buy that stuff at a pet store?
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Old 04-25-2009, 01:50 AM   #8
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You should be able to.
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Old 04-25-2009, 12:48 PM   #9
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If you have a farm supply store nearby, crushed oyster shell works well too. I've only ever seen it sold as a dietary supplement for chickens, but I've heard of it being available in pet stores at a much inflated price. Farm suppliers charge in the neighborhood of $3 for 50 lbs.

Most calcium supplements will affect pH, so it's much better if you can use a solid that will always be there rather than period additions.
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Old 04-25-2009, 12:59 PM   #10
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If you have a home depot nearby (mine stopped carrying it), they might have a aragonite-like sand that you could add. It's like 6$ for 50 lbs. (Yeah vinegar test)
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Old 04-25-2009, 01:05 PM   #11
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How could you tell before you buy it? I wouldn't think Home Depot would sort their sand by chemical composition as much as just grain size.
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Old 04-25-2009, 01:51 PM   #12
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I forget which one I bought. Instead of the silica-looking grain, its more flakey and its white. It was in the outdoor section by the playsands a couple summers ago. They might be able to order some... I guess the companies to look for are old castle and yardright...
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