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Old 04-03-2011, 07:19 PM   #1
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Question Reasons why a snail would decide to climb out of the water?

Hello,
Today I bought a Zebra Nerite Snail for my 20 gallon. After acclimating him, I put him in the tank and he didn't come out of his shell for about five minutes. When I started to see some signs of movement, I put in an algae wafer and he ate some of it. Then, he climbed the walls of the tank, going about halfway up, than back again, for about 20 minutes.

Later, however, I came back to check on him and he was on the aquarium glass, about an inch above the waterline of the tank.
These very very tiny clear bubble-like things seemed to be discharging from the snail, but I don't think they are eggs as I read that Nerite Snails don't lay eggs in clusters. Also, after looking up pictures of Zebra Nerite eggs I can tell that these tiny bubble-like clusters look nothing like the eggs in the pictures.

So, I then thought, if it's not egg laying, then what is the reason for this behavior? I then read that it could be due to stress from poor water quality, so I tested my parameters. Ammonia: 0, Nitrite: 0, Nitrate 10 or 20 (The two colors on the chart are very similar.)

I now know that it's not from egg laying, OR poor water quality, so what gives? He's been there for a few hours now and I'm worried of him (or her) drying out! So, just incase, I've been squirting a little bit of water on the snail (with a syringe I had nearby) every so often to keep it moist. I don't want this behavior to continue, as again, I'm worried about the snail drying out.

Thanks for the input!
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Old 04-03-2011, 09:12 PM   #2
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my snails liked to climb out of the water from time to time too. Could just be that he's still adjusting to the new tank. Give him a day and see what he's up to. He won't dry out that fast.
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Old 04-03-2011, 09:15 PM   #3
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my snails stay at the water line.. its normal.. i wish i had random syringes laying around.. cause my water doesnt always hit the lid to the tank to keep it wet for them
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Old 04-03-2011, 09:26 PM   #4
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Many people do not know this, but most aquarium snails have lungs instead of gills. They actually breathe air, then take it down with them into the aquarium. They need to surface periodically to breathe.
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Old 04-03-2011, 11:09 PM   #5
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Thanks everyone for the reassurance! I'll check on him tomorrow morning and see what he's up to. As this is my first snail that was actually off to a good start (my only other snail died suddenly.) I was worries that something had gone wrong again.

Now knowing that this is normal behavior, I'm fine with it. I'll have to make sure that there aren't any escape holes, though!

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Old 04-06-2011, 12:08 AM   #6
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Okay well I've now discovered that this snail prefers being out of the water more than in the water.
He's up there all the time, with only the occasional visit to the substrate every now and then.
I'm a bit disappointed, as this snail hasn't touched any algae since I got him. I heard that these Zebra Nerites were excellent algae eaters, and well- I've got plenty for him to snack on!

I'm thinking of trying my luck with another when my LFS gets some more in. Maybe it would be a bit more 'enthusiastic' about living up to his algae-eating expectations. Lol.
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Old 04-06-2011, 12:22 AM   #7
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They are tidal snails and so spend a good deal of the time out of the water. You can find more information about them here.
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Old 01-23-2020, 10:36 AM   #8
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Smile About rocky my tiger snail

My tiger snail did the same thing earlier so I just put him back in the water
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