Snail population getting out of control - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-02-2012, 03:11 AM Thread Starter
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Snail population getting out of control

Hello,

I added some more plants a few weeks ago and found 2 or 3 brown/black colored snails (now the size of a nickel). They have bred and now there are least 10 babies in the tank that are about the size of a pea or smaller.

What do I do to get rid of the babies and keep the population from growing so fast?

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post #2 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-02-2012, 03:16 AM
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Take out the adults or squish the babies. Or RAOK them.
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post #3 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-03-2012, 01:26 AM Thread Starter
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What about those Loach fish that like to eat snails?

What about assassin snails? I do not want an assassin snail to go after my golf-ball sized apple snail. Would one of them do that?

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post #4 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-03-2012, 01:47 AM
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Said it before I will say it again. Yo Yo Loaches. I had infestation in my 75. Bought two of these guys. In about a 2-3 weeks gone. Haven't seen a snail in a year.
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post #5 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-03-2012, 01:55 AM
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If you don't want to go the. "Get a Cat to kill the Rat" route. I suggest you do what I do. When it gets out of hand, put some food in a net in the tank over night and they will be in the net the next morning. Pull, keep some or none. That's up to you.

I like to have about 1 adult Ramshorns per 10gl. When babies hatch I let the grow for a while as they can get in an clean some tight spots. Babies on the glass that can easily get to get smushed for shimp & snail food.

Snails in moderation are part of a healthy tank.
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post #6 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-03-2012, 02:21 AM
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...or cut down on the feeding. Snail infestation means they've got a lot of food. If they don't get a lot of food, they die off.

I've never minded having snails in my tanks, at least not after I realized that simply squishing or removing dozens at a time seemed to do nothing to the overall population, as viewed 24 hours later (I just gave up on caring, and have been much happier since!). But I have noticed that the (visible) population fluctuates wildly. Specifically, I get snail outbreaks within weeks of remembering to feed daily for a couple weeks straight (ironic, I suppose?). Especially sinking wafers.
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post #7 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-03-2012, 02:37 AM
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I agree about feeding, but don't forget there is other "food" in the tank that just fish food, algae, bio-film, decaying plant materiel etc. etc.

All approaches have pro & con issues:

I used Zipper loaches, 4 sm. in a 40gl, No snails in 1 day. Trouble was I want a few and when they got to adult size they started digging into the MTS and trashed my tank.

I can not see having assassins as at least the Ramshorns & MTS eat algae.

Using a baited Net does require one gets involved.

Not everyone can deal with smooching snails

I thinks it's a matter of finding what works for you.
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post #8 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-03-2012, 08:08 AM
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Loaches can kill snails, but you need to fit the Loach to the tank. If it is the 29 in your signature do not get Yoyo Loaches. They are too big, too active. Depending on the rest of the fish something like Zebra Loaches might work. Sidthemunkis are another possibility. They are a small Loach, and I found they are not good against the adult snails, but I think they were attacking the baby snails pretty well.
Some Loaches will also pester the good snails like Nerites and Apple Snails. I think it is a personality thing. I have Dojo that is not interested in the Nerite or Rams horns, but keeps the pond snails under control.

Baiting and removing, and feeding less would be my first choice.
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post #9 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-03-2012, 02:37 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you all for the good suggestions. I will try to remove as many as I can by hand, and try the baited net method tonight.

How much should I be feeding my tank so that it will cut down on the snail population? Right now the tank is home to 1 golf-ball sized apple snail (love him), 11 neon tetras, 8 Schwarzti cory cats and 3 emerald-green cory cats. There are two adult black/brown nuisance snails and 15-20 babies (pea-size or smaller).

Additional Question: How many more fish could my tank support in theory? I'd like to get a few larger schooling fish like rainbowfish or gouramis. Would they be ok in my tank?

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Last edited by WestHaven; 09-03-2012 at 07:16 PM. Reason: Additional question?
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post #10 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-04-2012, 01:07 AM Thread Starter
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Ok, so what I did today was catch about 8 babies brown/black snails and the two adults and flushed them. I still have 15-20 other baby snails though. I hope that with less feeding of the tank I can contain them.

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