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Old 07-28-2021, 01:22 AM   #1
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Opinion on snails

So my 29gal has a small common pleco that I was hoping would keep things somewhat tidy in the tank. But it appears heís more interested in hanging out on the plants rather than the glass!

Iíve read snails are pretty handy at keeping the algae buildup down. So Iíve been considering adding a couple mystery snails.

My only concern would be them multiplying. If they were to reproduce, could I count on the comets in the tank to take care of them or am I going to end up with a tank full of snails in a year?

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Old 07-28-2021, 01:29 AM   #2
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Nerite snails? They still breed and lay eggs, but the eggs need brackish water to hatch. The eggs are a pain to remove if you don't like the look of them however, particularly difficult to get off driftwood.
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Old 07-28-2021, 01:57 AM   #3
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I was thinking mystery snails as they’re easier to obtain around here right now. Though I’ve read nerites are better suited for the algae eating job than mystery snails.

I don’t have any driftwood in the tank right now. It’s sparsely decorated to give the comets room to buzz around. Just a little hideout at one end and a couple clusters of red Ludwigia in the middle
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Old 07-28-2021, 02:09 AM   #4
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Ive never kept mystery snails, but understand they lay eggs in a clutch above the water line which can easily be seen and removed as long as you keep an eye out for them.

I can see goldfish eating snails small enough to fit in their mouths however, so that may be another control on their numbers.
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Old 07-28-2021, 09:43 PM   #5
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Been reading the mystery snails can try and get out of the tank more so than other breeds. My lid is far from air tight which is a good thing imo. But there’s a gap at one end of the lid that allows passage of hoses and wires as well as about 1/2” gap around the filter.

Likely safe to say mystery snails won’t find their way out if they decided to venture to high ground?
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Old 07-29-2021, 02:47 PM   #6
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Snails are escape artists. I’ve heard accounts of people having their snails escape through the thinnest of gaps in their lids before.

I have trumpet snails which, although can multiply to enormous numbers, don’t escape or pollute the water. Trumpet snails are livebearers, meaning you won’t have to deal with messy eggs. Snail populations grow proportionate to the leftover food and microfauna in the tank.

Goldfish, as with any fish, are opportunistic feeders and will eat whatever can fit into their mouth, whenever. I have to imagine they’ll eat snails smaller than their mouths.

Rather than using fish or invertebrates to keep algae at bay, I recommend getting to the bottom of why algae is blooming in the first place. All tanks will normally have algae growing in them. Adding more animals produces more nitrogen, so even fish branded as algae eaters will contribute to the growth of algae. Invertebrates less so because they have tiny bioloads.

Removing algae is usually as trivial as lowering light hours, light intensity, nitrate and phosphate. For diatoms (not an algae, but can annoy hobbyists just as much as algae), you want to lower the silica levels in the water as well, which are high in new setups. Silica goes away itself over time.
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Old 07-29-2021, 07:12 PM   #7
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The tank is just starting to cycle in the last week or 2, fish-in cycle obviously.

The tank is out of direct sunlight but it does get indirect light from dawn to dusk, and I do use the led lights in the lid during the day. I do have plants in the tank, so it does need some amount of light to keep those happy

I’ve only noticed the algae starting to develop in the tank in the last week or so, I just want to get a handle on it before it gets way out of hand!
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Old 07-29-2021, 07:44 PM   #8
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If youíre using an LED light, cut way down on the blue light spectrum. I have to stay around 3% on the blue lights.
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Old 07-29-2021, 10:03 PM   #9
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Thatís a lot of lighting in a system thatís not cycled and heavily stocked so their are a ton of nutrients fit algae to feed off. Your best bet is to reduce the light somehow, or stop using the hood lights completely.
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Old 07-30-2021, 12:20 AM   #10
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I can definitely try going without the hood light, the plants (red ludwigia) seem to be doing pretty well right now. I imagine that will slow things down as far as their growth but I’m ok with that if they don’t die off lol
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Old 07-30-2021, 10:47 PM   #11
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I've had plenty of Mystery snails and Nerite snails. Pros and cons, in my experience: Nerites are the big algae eaters and their eggs, if they lay any, rarely hatch (as mentioned above). Mysteries are big eaters and big poopers, and algae doesn't figure into their diet as much as it does for Nerites.

Mysteries also lay eggs, lots of eggs, in white clusters the size of a mulberry. A mating pair will produce two of these clusters each week; if you decide you've had enough of the constant eat-poop-egg cycle and remove one, the female (if that's who is still in your tank) will continue producing egg clusters for up to six months even though she is alone. I guess you can see where I'm going with this as far as personal choices: I now have predominately Nerites and am slowly finding the Mysteries other homes. The result, in this house, is cleaner tanks: less algae, less poop.
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Old 07-30-2021, 10:55 PM   #12
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Fair enough, that’s the input I’m looking for!

I want to try and balance the ecosystem in this tank and clean it up, not make a bigger mess lol

I’ll hold off and see if some nerites go up for sale around here
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Old 07-30-2021, 11:17 PM   #13
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I've bought both types of snails on ebay. Most live snail-fish-plant sellers there mention that they only ship on Mondays and Tuesdays to be sure your live cargo won't be sitting in a warehouse over the weekend. Nerites are smaller than Mysteries. They come in lots of colors and designs.

As far as climbing out of the tank goes, I've heard of people having this problem though it has not happened here. All snails like to go up to the top of the waterline or above it, totally out of the water sometimes. They may even hang out there for a few days, though since we can't sit staring at them 24/7 there is a possibility that they only seem like they're up there for 12-36 hours. They may actually be taking a little dip when we're not looking. They are nocturnal creatures, so at 3am when the lights are off they may have a whole circus going on in there, who knows?

Anyway, they are little vacuums that slowly, methodically go over every surface including glass.
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Old 08-01-2021, 03:23 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ColdKoi View Post
So my 29gal has a small common pleco that I was hoping would keep things somewhat tidy in the tank. But it appears heís more interested in hanging out on the plants rather than the glass!



Iíve read snails are pretty handy at keeping the algae buildup down. So Iíve been considering adding a couple mystery snails.



My only concern would be them multiplying. If they were to reproduce, could I count on the comets in the tank to take care of them or am I going to end up with a tank full of snails in a year?


Mystery snails are so fun! And if they do reproduce, Iím 90% sure your comets will eat them. Gold fish will eat just about anything and will NOT STOP. And having a little extra snails in the tank isnít too bad, considering they live up to only a year. Just make sure you stay on top of your water parameters and you will be fine
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Old 08-02-2021, 01:04 PM   #15
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I would recommend nerite snails. They do lay eggs but need particular hatching conditions, donít think they would hatch in a standard aquarium. so nerites are probably the BEST ones for you.
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