Pond snails... keep or kill? - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 26 (permalink) Old 09-14-2019, 09:20 PM Thread Starter
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Pond snails... keep or kill?

Hi all,
I have a heavily planted tank and we had snails come in on a plant. We have been manually removing them for a few months but we are clearly not able to get them all as more show up every few days.
I've considered treating with copper but we have 1 ghost shrimp and a mystery snail - both are 3 years old.
Is it possible to remove our good snail and shrimp to treat the tank and put them back in a few days?
I would leave them but they keep eating my plants (they destroyed my water lily) and are are rough on my Amazon sword.
Suggestions?
TIA
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post #2 of 26 (permalink) Old 09-14-2019, 09:54 PM
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They would only be cleaning up dead tissue on your plants, so don’t worry about that. Snails are helpful and their population is a good metric to see if you are over feeding.

I’ll share my own snail regret. Before I learned to embrace them, I bought a really cool loach. However I now have zero snails in that tank and many fewer shrimp.
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post #3 of 26 (permalink) Old 09-14-2019, 10:02 PM
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I'm among several of us here who actually add pond and trumpet snails to every freshwater aquarium I set up. As mentioned, nothing reproduces past its resources so if you are getting a ton of them, you are overfeeding. If you do want to eradicate them, copper is a terrible idea. You'll have to pretty much trash everything in the tank if you ever want to keep any inverts in that tank again. There are lots of fish that will eat them, as well as assassin snails, traps, manual removal, drop a cucumber slice in at night and remove it along with snails covering it in the morning, etc.
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Nothing good happens fast in an ecosystem.
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post #4 of 26 (permalink) Old 09-15-2019, 05:31 AM
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Are you sure they are pond snails and not bladder snails?
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post #5 of 26 (permalink) Old 09-15-2019, 01:19 PM
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I think Bladder snails would survive a Nuclear Armageddon.
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post #6 of 26 (permalink) Old 09-17-2019, 01:20 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Blue Ridge Reef View Post
I'm among several of us here who actually add pond and trumpet snails to every freshwater aquarium I set up. As mentioned, nothing reproduces past its resources so if you are getting a ton of them, you are overfeeding. If you do want to eradicate them, copper is a terrible idea. You'll have to pretty much trash everything in the tank if you ever want to keep any inverts in that tank again. There are lots of fish that will eat them, as well as assassin snails, traps, manual removal, drop a cucumber slice in at night and remove it along with snails covering it in the morning, etc.
I save the snails from any bucket cleaning I do, either to clean the glass for me, or treats for the the loach!

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post #7 of 26 (permalink) Old 09-17-2019, 03:49 AM
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I'd only kill if I was wanting to establish different snails like mts or ramshorn. Otherwise the more links in the chain to break down waste the better.
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post #8 of 26 (permalink) Old 09-17-2019, 04:32 PM
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Depends on the application for the tank. Like others have mentioned, snails are not inherently bad. They probably help your tank. The only real downside is how they look on the glass. I have one tank with ramshorns and one without. The ramshorn tank always looks dirty because the snails dot the glass. We don't have many ramshorns in the tank, but I find that even 3 little snails on the front glass of a 10g doesn't look great. For purposes of displaying a tank, I much prefer no "pest" snails. For health of a tank if you are the only one looking at it, leave them in.
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post #9 of 26 (permalink) Old 09-19-2019, 12:04 AM
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snails

I like the snails. I have all kinds, MTS, pond, mystery... When they finish cleaning up your plants they die off unless you provide some other algae source. They don't kill healthy plants, just digest the weak, dying parts, so it is, as mentioned before, just a matter of aesthetics.
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post #10 of 26 (permalink) Old 09-19-2019, 12:17 AM
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I am a bit of a perfectionist. All my tanks have some sort of symmetry with filters and lights, either in-tank, on-tank, or with a sibling tank setup as a mirror image.

However, I cannot be a perfectionist about life, including mulm, snails, dirty filter foam, etc. Sometimes when I have tried to over-clean, or over-manicure, I have disrupted an ecosystem. Now I let the mulm get eaten, or re-absorb into the substrate. I let the snails do their thing. I only clean my foam if the water can't flow.

Also on the topic of filter turnover from another thread, I think it does not apply in most planted tanks. All you need is just enough stir. Define that as necessary for your tank and livestock. In my case, I want just enough flow to blow sediment off of plant leaves.

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Last edited by Streetwise; 09-19-2019 at 12:59 AM. Reason: Details
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post #11 of 26 (permalink) Old 09-19-2019, 05:30 AM Thread Starter
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Well, from pictures online - they look like bladder snail OR pond snails. I think they are eating my plants b/c something is! I just took a few pictures and when zoomed in I discovered possibly another problem. My plants have small hairs on them and then I saw what looks like flatworm. I have overfed recently b/c two platty have given birth and my plecos are always raising babies and my corey have laid eggs twice recently (no Corey eggs hatched).I can't get a picture to attach but I'll keep trying.
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post #12 of 26 (permalink) Old 09-19-2019, 05:50 AM
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If it helps...

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post #13 of 26 (permalink) Old 09-19-2019, 06:08 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the comparison side by side!
They are Bladder snails for sure!
Is this good or bad?

Is this where the worms came from somehow?
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post #14 of 26 (permalink) Old 09-19-2019, 03:33 PM
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Seriously, they're fine. Fire up the search dialog here on the forum to see how other people keep them. Browse through some tank journals. Or even read through the thousands of other similar threads - not being snarky because they're actually helpful.

Flat worms and detritus worms are just a common part of having a planted tank and are totally fine - even some planarian. It's not uncommon to find leeches and other critters in well-established tanks after years of seeing nothing.

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Thanks for the comparison side by side!
They are Bladder snails for sure!
Is this good or bad?

Is this where the worms came from somehow?


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post #15 of 26 (permalink) Old 09-20-2019, 02:30 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Streetwise View Post
They would only be cleaning up dead tissue on your plants, so don’t worry about that. Snails are helpful and their population is a good metric to see if you are over feeding.

I’ll share my own snail regret. Before I learned to embrace them, I bought a really cool loach. However I now have zero snails in that tank and many fewer shrimp.
Crush them between your fingers and let the fish eat them. They make an excellent fish food.
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