Malaysian trumpet snails - thoughts on population control? - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-10-2020, 06:38 AM Thread Starter
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Malaysian trumpet snails - thoughts on population control?

I had a Malaysian Trumpet Snail hitchhiker on a plant a while back, and we welcomed Mr Trumpy into our community. Mr Trumpy had offspring which was great timing as we needed some snails in our new shrimp tanks. The kids had a few grandkids which was also great.

Then we had population explosion in the shrimp tanks and numbers of tiny baby snails on the glass is getting a bit ridiculous. The explosion in snail population occurred at exactly the same time that all my shrimp started breeding too, so I am sure that the tanks just reached optimum conditions for both sets of critters.

These are primarily shrimp tanks and I have no intention of using any sort of chemical control, and I realise that the only answer is probably manual removal, but also hoping that someone has a bright idea or experience that might help...

So, anyway suggesting for keeping MTS populations under control please?

These tanks are barely fed, so no "stop overfeeding" comments please! They have Amazonia soil and lots of moss, biofilm, green goodness on glass etc, etc. In short, everything that is good for shrimp and which is also therefore good for the snails! Current approach is to remove any baby snails that are spotted on the glass on sight using tweezers. (I realise it might be better to evict Mr Trumpy and the other randy grownups to prevent new eggs being laid, but we're kind of attached to the first 2 generations).

Thanks, James


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post #2 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-10-2020, 09:14 AM
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Assassin snails. They're predatory whelks which breed far slower than their prey items, but will assist in keeping the population under control.

Buy a pea puffer and put it into a different tank. Make a snail trap, and let'er rip!
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So many fish/plants/inverts to keep, not enough aquaria.
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post #3 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-10-2020, 06:02 PM
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I second the suggestion of assassin snails. They're pretty too!
I like keeping trumpy's and assassins (I call them Harris's now) in all of my tanks with sand as they help keep things moving and healthy in the sand substrate.


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post #4 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-10-2020, 06:12 PM
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I had no luck controlling MTS with assassin snails.
The MTS were in a juvenile discus tank where I was feeding 5 times a day with daily 50-75% water changes. I added assassins and they were ineffective at controlling them. Finally had to take all substrate out, sanitize tank, and sterilize all equipment to get rid of eggs.
I find them repulsive.
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post #5 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-11-2020, 04:13 AM Thread Starter
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Thank you - will investigate assassin snails!
Will they not completely wipe out the MTS in my small (11 litre) tanks though?


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post #6 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-11-2020, 08:14 AM
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Well, they shouldn't. If they reproduce, then you'll need to monitor the population, and if the MTS population is too small for your liking, then you can always sell off the excess assassins.
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So many fish/plants/inverts to keep, not enough aquaria.
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post #7 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-11-2020, 01:04 PM Thread Starter
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Ok, great, thank you!


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post #8 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-11-2020, 03:28 PM
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Ramshorns and pond snails can out compete them to a degree, but I'm not sure that wouldn't be just diversifying your problem. I had no luck with assassin snails on aqua soil, I think the water was just too soft for them. A slice of cucumber weighted down overnight and then removed along with attached snails the next morning before lights come on can make some headway and is a little easier than just pulling them out one at a time. Also removing egg clusters before they become more snails should slow things down.
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Nothing good happens fast in an ecosystem.
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post #9 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-11-2020, 08:46 PM
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Here is a little gizmo I made from an old net and some plastic canvas . I just wait till an hour or more after lights out and scrape them off the glass into the basket and then dispose of them . I can't find assassin snails around me . This works well just have to remember to do it . Also I think MTS are live bearers and don't even need the opposite sex to procreate . Correct me if I am wrong .
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My wife says if I get one more aquarium she is going to leave me . I sure am going to miss her fried chicken .
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post #10 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-11-2020, 09:19 PM
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You are correct! Up to 70 live babies at a time according to TFH. I have a mix of snails (on purpose) and had totally forgotten that the egg clusters I remove at times can't be theirs!
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post #11 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-12-2020, 05:15 AM
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I've had success with assassin snails but depending on the MTS population, you need lots of assassins and it takes months. I added 12-24 assassins at a time to my 40g, and then added even more over several months. Did the same with a 20g. The tanks stayed clear for a long while, but eventually became re-populated, most likely transferred from other tanks I have that were not cleared. This gets pricey. Smaller numbers of assassins will at least keep the MTS numbers down to a more "acceptable" level than if there were no assassins. I hate MTS but have learned to live with some level of them.
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post #12 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-17-2020, 10:52 PM
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MTS population control with assassin snails was a loss caused over time. MTS was under control at the beginning and after four years the tank is overrun with MTS.
Lots of MTS shells in there.

Last edited by shou; 11-17-2020 at 10:57 PM. Reason: Edited
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