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Old 09-27-2006, 09:01 AM   #1
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What type of fish is a snail eating bottom feeder?

My dad wants to get a catfish for his female 10g betta tank. However, he is having pond snail issues. (Just can't seem to get rid of them) So I thought maybe there is a combo bottom feeder/snail muncher?

Any ideas?

Oh I should mention there are 3 female bettas and the tank is lightly planted (but I saw yesterday he got 2 more plants but not sure if they are for this tank or not.) Thanks!

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Old 09-27-2006, 09:39 AM   #2
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There are loaches that eat snails, but all the species I can think of off the top of my head grow too large and are too active to be kept in a a 10 gallon. Plus, I think the tank is pretty much at its stocking limit with 3 female bettas. I would recommend either removing the snails by hand every so often, or putting a piece of lettuce in a Tupperware container (make sure there is no soap residue on it) and leaving it in the tank overnight. Remove the Tupperware in the morning and a lot of snails should come out with it.
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Old 09-28-2006, 02:07 AM   #3
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The dwarf loach, or Botia sidthimunki, is one species of loach that will both take care of your snail problem and work well in such a small tank. You need to get three of them as they are happier in groups. The downside is that not all fish stores carry them and they are usually more expensive than other loaches.
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Old 09-28-2006, 07:11 AM   #4
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Thanks I'll look into that.
Anything else that might work?

By the way, he is hand removing them with greens and such, getting better control of the situation, just thought I'd ask if there was another way.
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Old 09-28-2006, 07:16 AM   #5
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I can't think of anything else that might work in this situation other than what has already been mentioned. I forgot to add that dwarf loaches like a lot of plants and other decorations to swim around and hide behind.
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Old 09-28-2006, 07:54 AM   #6
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Only thing I can think of is a dwarf puffer. They only get about 1.5 inches and they love pond snails. But I don't have any experience with them in a small tank. Mine are in a 92G communitity and they only quarrel amongst themselves. Oh and they won't eat any leftover food. I can only get mine to eat live food.........snails are there favorite.
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Old 09-28-2006, 08:02 AM   #7
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I had considered recommending a South American puffer because they also eat snails. I decided against it because they can nip fins on other fish.
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Old 09-28-2006, 08:37 AM   #8
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Ya I hear that alot about the dwarf puffers but that hasn't been my experience.
Although like I mentioned .......I have a large tank. That could be the reason for the lack of aggression towards the other fish.
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Old 09-28-2006, 12:19 PM   #9
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Pond snails aren't necessarily a problem you need to exterminate. They're eating all the leftover food in your tank. Cut back on how much you feed the fish and their numbers will decrease too. I wouldn't add another fish just to do your maintenance for you.
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I just want my planted tanks to be perfect. Is that so much to ask?

55g: (Mostly) African riverine species: Alestes Chaperi, breeding pair of Kribs, and rhino pleco
30g: Newly established reef tank
10g: Planted but fishless
5g: Unplanted with various snail species
2.5g: Heavily planted with betta.
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Old 09-28-2006, 12:23 PM   #10
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There is a type of snails that need to be exterminated though, correct?

What type is that.
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Old 09-28-2006, 12:30 PM   #11
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There are no types of snails that are a danger to fish (as far as I'm aware), and that would be the only case I'd consider it a necessity to get rid of them. Some of them can be kind of obnoxious, especially if you have plants, but they're not really harmful. In some places you can't own mystery snails because they can outcompete native species if they get released into the wild.

I have 5 species of snails, some I got intentionally and some not, but I appreciate them all and have no intention of eliminating them. I think its weird that people will get snails and automatically believe they're bad. They serve a function in the tank's ecosystem, or else they wouldn't be there.
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I just want my planted tanks to be perfect. Is that so much to ask?

55g: (Mostly) African riverine species: Alestes Chaperi, breeding pair of Kribs, and rhino pleco
30g: Newly established reef tank
10g: Planted but fishless
5g: Unplanted with various snail species
2.5g: Heavily planted with betta.
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Old 09-28-2006, 12:35 PM   #12
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Oh, I thought I heard somewhere that some (a) species of snail had larvae that were parasitic to fish...

Sorry if I am an idiot, i just might have read something wrong...

I agree though, Snails are neat, and the only reason they are a problem is if they bother
a) the fish
b) the plants (if there are any)
or
c) the fishkeeper...
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Old 09-28-2006, 01:07 PM   #13
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I have snails in most of my tanks and like it that way. I have rams horn snails in my 30g and MTS in both of my 20g and two of my 10g tanks. I intentionally spread the MTS to other tanks to help stir up the substrate and avoid anaerobic bacteria.
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Old 09-28-2006, 08:19 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sabbott1877
Oh, I thought I heard somewhere that some (a) species of snail had larvae that were parasitic to fish...

Sorry if I am an idiot, i just might have read something wrong...

I agree though, Snails are neat, and the only reason they are a problem is if they bother
a) the fish
b) the plants (if there are any)
or
c) the fishkeeper...
a) Well, now I have to do some research. I hadn't heard about the snail larvae, but there are other hitchhikers that come in with plants, like hydra, that can hurt fish. I'll get back to you on that snail thing.
b) I've been very lucky and haven't had any pest snails that eat my plants, so I leave them. I have paid for snails that have eaten my plants though. And honestly, the majority of species will only eat dead or dying plant matter, so its possible that they're munching on plants that wouldn't be around for much longer anyways. Gotta consider that.
c) I think this one is weird. A lot of people go crazy when they find snails, especially the first time. Somehow we start out with an idea that if we didn't put it there then its a pest, even if they don't bother anything. Allowing some biodiversity in your tank is a good thing. In smaller tanks especially, snails are a great way to clean up when you don't have a lot of room for other bottom feeders. And if you keep the amount of food down, their population will stay down too.
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I just want my planted tanks to be perfect. Is that so much to ask?

55g: (Mostly) African riverine species: Alestes Chaperi, breeding pair of Kribs, and rhino pleco
30g: Newly established reef tank
10g: Planted but fishless
5g: Unplanted with various snail species
2.5g: Heavily planted with betta.
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Old 09-28-2006, 08:37 PM   #15
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I've got nothing against snails (despite my unwelcome visitors thread). And if it weren't for the fact that the snails and the holes in my plant leaves showed up at the same time I would probably even like them...

But as is...
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Old 09-28-2006, 09:08 PM   #16
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May I recommend Kuhli loaches. They stay small, are unusual, fun to watch, and will eat leftover food as well as smaller snails. Keep more than one for maximum viewing pleasure. For a 10 gallon planted tank I would do about three of them.
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Old 09-29-2006, 08:09 PM   #17
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Ichthyologist, what a great suggestion. Since there will not always be snails to munch, and they are such an interesting fish. I'll suggest it to my dad. I believe there are several different kinds as well, yes? I was looking at a black one today, but there was no posted sign for it....
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Old 09-29-2006, 09:44 PM   #18
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i really have to go against kuhlis, they hide, and when they do come out, swim around like idiots, hitting any fish in their way.
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Old 09-29-2006, 11:13 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hc8719
i really have to go against kuhlis, they hide, and when they do come out, swim around like idiots, hitting any fish in their way.
Good point about the hiding.. I don't think my dad would like that.
Any other suggestions?
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Old 09-29-2006, 11:55 PM   #20
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Just to add...I had the best luck with the clown loach. I was totally infected with snails in my 5 gallon when I first started. Like millions of little snails all over the place. Got a clown loach and they were gone within a week.

I had started with 2 little "seed" snails and oh my goodness, I've never seen so many. They were so cute when there was just 2, but quickly outgrew their cuteness.

~~Ange
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