RCS and Nerite Snails or Zebra Pleco - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 24 (permalink) Old 01-05-2016, 07:25 AM Thread Starter
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RCS and Nerite Snails or Zebra Pleco

Hello everyone. I want to add RCS to my tank (2nd attempt, 1st attempt died every time them molted because I didn't provide enough hiding spots) because they are active and good to look at. I also thought I should add something that may eat the algae in my tank so I was thinking of adding nerite snails or a zebra pleco.

I don't know much about nerite snails but I do currently have MTS and pond snails or bladder snails (how do I tell them apart?) in my tank even though I only wanted the MTS.

The MTS I added on purpose the other snails came in on a plant.

The main purpose of this post was to ask if anyone had experience with the nerite snail vs the zebra pleco on algae eating (when the algae is gone I have no problem dropping in algae wafers for either one).

Also any suggestions on getting rid of the other snails but keeping the MTS? I assume the only way is to catch some MTS in a separate tank and introducing something that will take out the rest of the snails in my main tank?

Any suggestions on hiding spots for the shrimp when they molt? Right now I threw in some cut up 1 inch pvc piping in hope they will hide in it, but since I do not have them yet I have time to improve.

Thanks in advance
~Drew

O the tank is a 20 gallon (soon to upgrade to a 29) with only guppies in it and some plants.


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29g~ Guppies, Blue Pearl Shrimp & 2 Nerites
~ Amazon Sword ~ Anubias Congensis ~ Red Ludwigia
~ Duckweed ~ Dwarf Water Lettuce ~ Moneywort
~ Egeria Densa ~ Java Moss ~ Corkscrew Vals
~ Marimo Moss Ball ~ Salvinia ~Java Moss ~Pearl Weed
~ Red Sword Plant ~ Anubias Petite ~ Phoenix Moss
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post #2 of 24 (permalink) Old 01-05-2016, 01:30 PM
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Originally Posted by Drewet88 View Post
Hello everyone. I want to add RCS to my tank (2nd attempt, 1st attempt died every time them molted because I didn't provide enough hiding spots) because they are active and good to look at. I also thought I should add something that may eat the algae in my tank so I was thinking of adding nerite snails or a zebra pleco.

I don't know much about nerite snails but I do currently have MTS and pond snails or bladder snails (how do I tell them apart?) in my tank even though I only wanted the MTS.

The MTS I added on purpose the other snails came in on a plant.

The main purpose of this post was to ask if anyone had experience with the nerite snail vs the zebra pleco on algae eating (when the algae is gone I have no problem dropping in algae wafers for either one).

Also any suggestions on getting rid of the other snails but keeping the MTS? I assume the only way is to catch some MTS in a separate tank and introducing something that will take out the rest of the snails in my main tank?

Any suggestions on hiding spots for the shrimp when they molt? Right now I threw in some cut up 1 inch pvc piping in hope they will hide in it, but since I do not have them yet I have time to improve.

Thanks in advance
~Drew

O the tank is a 20 gallon (soon to upgrade to a 29) with only guppies in it and some plants.
L46 pleco are a great option but incredibly expensive. I also can't find those locally. If you can afford it I'd go with the zebras

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post #3 of 24 (permalink) Old 01-05-2016, 01:33 PM
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L046 zebra plecos are more carnivorous than algae eaters. They have special requirements (high temperature, diet, etc.) that make them best for a species breeding setup, especially when considering that they're endangered.

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post #4 of 24 (permalink) Old 01-05-2016, 05:15 PM Thread Starter
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I didn't know zebra plecos are endangered good info. I did know they were expensive (cheapest I saw was $30 when searching and not locally). It definitely would be more expensive than any other fish I've ever owned and I wouldn't want to kill it.

Maybe I'll wait until I have my RCS and see if I can keep them alive. I might go for a nerite snail just because of the harder requirements for the L046 Ok they aren't hard but I only keep guppies right now and I still end up losing one of them every few months. Not from water issues usually from bullying or not thinning out the males.

Any advice on a place for Nerite snails? How about stocking recommendations?


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29g~ Guppies, Blue Pearl Shrimp & 2 Nerites
~ Amazon Sword ~ Anubias Congensis ~ Red Ludwigia
~ Duckweed ~ Dwarf Water Lettuce ~ Moneywort
~ Egeria Densa ~ Java Moss ~ Corkscrew Vals
~ Marimo Moss Ball ~ Salvinia ~Java Moss ~Pearl Weed
~ Red Sword Plant ~ Anubias Petite ~ Phoenix Moss
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post #5 of 24 (permalink) Old 01-05-2016, 05:38 PM
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If you could please tell me where to find a zebra pleco (L46) for $30 I would be forever grateful to you.
L46 are carnivores and will not touch any type of algae.

20g L46/hastatus/pygmy corys, 10g OEBTs, 10g blue bees/blue velvet shrimp, 10g CRS, 25g L174s/BNs/L340s, 10g yellow/red tiger shrimp, 15g clown plecos/CPDs/habrosus corys, 15g cory fry, 29g Weitzmani/panda corys/BNs, 46g L134s/salt and pepper corys/BNs/rubberlip pleco, 55g SAE/L201s/L199s/BNs/kissing gourami, 75g L316s/BNs/L134s/CAE/silver dollar, 30g L340s/L211s/CPDs,10g tangerine tiger/snowball shrimp, 20g L134/habrosus corys, 10g CPD fry
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post #6 of 24 (permalink) Old 01-05-2016, 06:50 PM
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If you could please tell me where to find a zebra pleco (L46) for $30 I would be forever grateful to you.
L46 are carnivores and will not touch any type of algae.
This=) I would buy every single one at 30 bucks, I'd love to start a breeding program with them. Beautiful fish.
As for the op nerite snails are algae obliteraters. You will need to feed them greens once your algae is all gone though.

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post #7 of 24 (permalink) Old 01-05-2016, 08:47 PM Thread Starter
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If you could please tell me where to find a zebra pleco (L46) for $30 I would be forever grateful to you.
L46 are carnivores and will not touch any type of algae.
Ok my fault I forgot I was also researching clown plecos they were the $30 fish, and from what I read $30 is expensive for a clown pleco. The best prices I've seen for zebra plecos were at least $100 on zebrapleco.com. Obviously I haven't used them to order one but they do have the best prices I've seen so far, from what I can tell its a mix between forums and aquabid just for zebra plecos.

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This=) I would buy every single one at 30 bucks, I'd love to start a breeding program with them. Beautiful fish.
As for the op nerite snails are algae obliteraters. You will need to feed them greens once your algae is all gone though.

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I'm ok with that. I even feed my guppies and current snails some raw veggies occasionally. Would algae tablets work also? Would there be a battle for food between the nerites and my RCS?

I think I'll start with 2-3 nerite snails and see how it goes from there. I don't need them to wipe out all the algae, just enough between water changes so it doesn't get to out of hand.


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29g~ Guppies, Blue Pearl Shrimp & 2 Nerites
~ Amazon Sword ~ Anubias Congensis ~ Red Ludwigia
~ Duckweed ~ Dwarf Water Lettuce ~ Moneywort
~ Egeria Densa ~ Java Moss ~ Corkscrew Vals
~ Marimo Moss Ball ~ Salvinia ~Java Moss ~Pearl Weed
~ Red Sword Plant ~ Anubias Petite ~ Phoenix Moss
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post #8 of 24 (permalink) Old 01-05-2016, 08:50 PM
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Ok my fault I forgot I was also researching clown plecos they were the $30 fish, and from what I read $30 is expensive for a clown pleco. The best prices I've seen for zebra plecos were at least $100 on zebrapleco.com. Obviously I haven't used them to order one but they do have the best prices I've seen so far, from what I can tell its a mix between forums and aquabid just for zebra plecos.



I'm ok with that. I even feed my guppies and current snails some raw veggies occasionally. Would algae tablets work also? Would there be a battle for food between the nerites and my RCS?

I think I'll start with 2-3 nerite snails and see how it goes from there. I don't need them to wipe out all the algae, just enough between water changes so it doesn't get to out of hand.
The nerite snails and rcs won't fight but typically rcs will get to the food first, my nerite population prefers peeled frozen peas and blanched zucchini squash. They will eat algae wafers and left over food but it isn't ideal. Seaweed is a good treat too, for both nerites and rcs

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post #9 of 24 (permalink) Old 01-05-2016, 08:56 PM
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Are you sure that your original RCS deaths were due to not having hiding places? I don't have many hiding places, and mine molt fine. I have guppies too, and I've never seen them kill an adult RCS mid-molt.

It's possible you have other reasons for the death. I just want to ensure you don't end up losing your second batch of RCS because of a mistaken conclusion that giving them some hiding places will ensure they molt without issue.

It may be a good idea to let us know more about their death.
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post #10 of 24 (permalink) Old 01-05-2016, 09:18 PM
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3 nerites will be plenty for your tank. When I had a 46 gallon bowfront tank, 7 nerties completely wiped out any form of hard green algae.
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post #11 of 24 (permalink) Old 01-05-2016, 09:54 PM Thread Starter
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Are you sure that your original RCS deaths were due to not having hiding places? I don't have many hiding places, and mine molt fine. I have guppies too, and I've never seen them kill an adult RCS mid-molt.

It's possible you have other reasons for the death. I just want to ensure you don't end up losing your second batch of RCS because of a mistaken conclusion that giving them some hiding places will ensure they molt without issue.

It may be a good idea to let us know more about their death.
That's the only reason I could think of. Back then I also had a few mollies in the tank. I would see berried females but the eggs never hatched just slowly disappeared. Then I occasionally would find a shell of one, but I never got to see them after they molted. This went on until I just didn't have anymore slowly over less than 3 months.

I have slightly hard water, kept cuttlebone in the tank for them to munch on. I wasn't using any fertilizers back then so I wasn't adding anything with copper (unless its in my water already, I just thought about that should I get a copper tester?).

The only thing I could think of was not enough hiding spots during molting so their frail bodies were exposed for fish and other shrimp to torment them in their weakened state. I could be wrong but I do not want to kill another batch of RCS.

So far in hopes of getting RCS again I have been adding live plants, rock caves, pvc piping, all in hopes of giving the RCS a fighting chance.

@Axelrodi202 thanks for the input. I'll be ordering 3 or so nerites in the future after my other tank is done cycling, hopefully I can find a seller that has nerites, RCS, and anubias so I only have to make one order


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29g~ Guppies, Blue Pearl Shrimp & 2 Nerites
~ Amazon Sword ~ Anubias Congensis ~ Red Ludwigia
~ Duckweed ~ Dwarf Water Lettuce ~ Moneywort
~ Egeria Densa ~ Java Moss ~ Corkscrew Vals
~ Marimo Moss Ball ~ Salvinia ~Java Moss ~Pearl Weed
~ Red Sword Plant ~ Anubias Petite ~ Phoenix Moss
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post #12 of 24 (permalink) Old 01-05-2016, 10:15 PM
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As far as I'm concerned Nerites are "the ultimate" algae janitors........
After I had 20 clean an entire algae coated 40b in a few days.. well they won my heart..

I'll take the egg thing...

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post #13 of 24 (permalink) Old 01-05-2016, 10:24 PM Thread Starter
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As far as I'm concerned Nerites are "the ultimate" algae janitors........
After I had 20 clean an entire algae coated 40b in a few days.. well they won my heart..

I'll take the egg thing...
Since nerites need brackish water for their eggs to hatch do the eggs just sit there and slowly break down? Will my shrimp eat them? I don't mind the eggs either, I'll have no problem wiping them off of the glass etc during maintenance/water changes.


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29g~ Guppies, Blue Pearl Shrimp & 2 Nerites
~ Amazon Sword ~ Anubias Congensis ~ Red Ludwigia
~ Duckweed ~ Dwarf Water Lettuce ~ Moneywort
~ Egeria Densa ~ Java Moss ~ Corkscrew Vals
~ Marimo Moss Ball ~ Salvinia ~Java Moss ~Pearl Weed
~ Red Sword Plant ~ Anubias Petite ~ Phoenix Moss
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post #14 of 24 (permalink) Old 01-05-2016, 10:32 PM
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My experience in keeping guppies with shrimp has been far less successful. Long story short, after weeks of peace, I had 6-10 guppies wipe out 20+ orange sakura shrimp in less than 12 hours. No doubt the guppies were responsible.


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Originally Posted by Blacktetra View Post
Are you sure that your original RCS deaths were due to not having hiding places? I don't have many hiding places, and mine molt fine. I have guppies too, and I've never seen them kill an adult RCS mid-molt.
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post #15 of 24 (permalink) Old 01-05-2016, 10:35 PM
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Since nerites need brackish water for their eggs to hatch do the eggs just sit there and slowly break down? Will my shrimp eat them? I don't mind the eggs either, I'll have no problem wiping them off of the glass etc during maintenance/water changes.
Actually they can hatch. Fry just don't survive. I've had fish eat them as well..
They do break down eventually.
I've also had periods of zero eggs then something triggers them..

best place to get them is there is a guy at that "you know" site, that is in New Orleans selling Olive Nerites..Best prices. I have to usually wait till spring or fall to order though.. Too cold here.

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