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Old 02-21-2022, 09:24 AM   #1
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Question Snail's calcium needs

This post is about my new fellow, sadly down to one now, the Mystery snail. This one looks just "okay" but I think he or she's got problems like the last. The shell seems to be deteriorating. I saw a post where the used Tums to help resolve the need of calcium. Then they said it's usually because the aquarium is too acidic but mine is not. It's 7.6.
Anyway, I thought I'd try 1/2 a Tums.
Please let me know if I am going down the wrong path.
Or please provide some insight to what is going on with my Mystery Snail.

Thanks,
JJ

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Old 02-21-2022, 09:41 AM   #2
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Its not really low pH that would be the issue but low general hardness (GH) or more specifically the calcium that makes up part of GH. It is generally true that high pH and high GH go together, but not always as it would depend specifically on what is raising your pH. Its also true that a high GH would often indicate high calcium, but again not always as magnesium also contributes GH.

If you really wanted to go into testing parameters to see if there is an issue for your snails shell building, then testing for GH would be more useful than testing pH, and testing for calcium more useful still than testing for GH.

If you think you have an issue, then either putting some cuttlefish bone in your tank or filter will give a reliable source of calcium for your snail, or some crushed coral in a media bag in your filter will do the same. Both can just be left there until it disolves over a period of months or even years without worrying about how much of a tums tablet to add in with every water change. Or feed some calcium rich veggies to your snail like cucumber or zuchini.

The likelihood is if you have high pH water in the tank, then you have higher GH, and if you have higher GH you have sufficient calcium for a snail though. But thats not always the case.
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Old 02-21-2022, 10:59 AM   #3
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Snail's calcium needs.

Thanks for the information. I'll look to get a GH tester, or calcium tester. I've seen adding Cuttlefish bone will help. I just didn't want to raise the ph too high, which I've seen in my tank before.
Now since I've been using less "Start up" and other additives, the ph and ammonia are stabilized.


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Old 02-21-2022, 11:04 AM   #4
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Cuttlebone or crushed coral will only raise pH up to a point. It doesnt keep raising it and raising it. I would have thought pH 7.6 was about as high as these would raise it to. You might see a slight increase. Its pH variations that are the issue. A steady pH in the mids 7s is fine for most fish.
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