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snails are your friend
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Weird that they wouldn't give you something they are just trying to get rid of. When I was in the business, I kept all the snails I could gather for customers with puffers, assassins and such. But I guess these "pest snail" perceptions die hard when 95% of your customers run to buy products at the first sight of a snail in their aquarium.
 

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Discussion Starter #42
Weird that they wouldn't give you something they are just trying to get rid of. When I was in the business, I kept all the snails I could gather for customers with puffers, assassins and such. But I guess these "pest snail" perceptions die hard when 95% of your customers run to buy products at the first sight of a snail in their aquarium.
He warned us that they can overtake a tank, which they can. My guess, and it's just that, is enough people have complained about it over the years that they are leery of just giving pond snails to people. I'll actually tell them that I am looking for them and want them to reproduce in my tank and I have experience with them. I didn't bother going into it when we had asked about them since we were also looking for a mystery snail as well. It just wasn't important at the time, lol.
 

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snails are your friend
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I mean, by that rationale guppies and cherry shrimp can take over a tank! But yeah, anyone with experience should be able to keep snails in a planted tank without population problems. I get that those people make up a small percentage of most shop's customer bases but you have to cater to actual informed hobbyists too.
 

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Discussion Starter #44
Ammonia is 0 and Nitrite is 2 PPM if I'm reading the color chart right. I hope to go to the LFS I mentioned in a prior post to get some pest snails this weekend. Hopefully it goes well...
 

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Discussion Starter #45
I was able to get 30ish "pest" snails on Saturday. About 8 ramhorns and 20+ pond/bladder. It was interesting trying to get them but I managed... I hope I can survive the snail apocalypse that will beset me>:) I'd like to get a hold of some MTS for the sand. Ohh, I now have snail poo all over the place, lol.

They have been working away in the tank and it's made a big difference. The driftwood was getting furry and it's nice and is clean now. They have also been cleaning the glass and plants as expected.

I won't dose ammonia any longer and will track Nitrites. Hopefully I can add a little more stuff in a few weeks.
 

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Those snails won't produce enough of a bioload to keep all your bacterial colonies alive. They will only have enough of a bioload to keep enough bacteria alive to support them. And that's almost non-existent even with 30 snails.

You'll need to dose ammonia until you're ready to stock the tank. If you don't continue dosing ammonia, your tank won't finish "cycling" - nitrites may disappear but that'll be because the bacteria that process ammonia won't have anything to consume.
 

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Discussion Starter #48
The snails are doing a great job keeping the tank look good. No surprises there really.

I finally got my DIY CO2 up and running yesterday. It was a bit of a PITA to get the hoses connected to the defuser and glass elbow. I'm used to heating airline hose in hot water to help make it soft to then attach to a fitting. Turns out that doesn't work with what I have. The water makes the airline hose slide off the glass tubes after you get it one and release it. Once I just did it dry, things seem to hold. Seems a bit wonky to me but.... I'm doing the citric acid method and about 1 bubble/second. It's been pretty smooth after the initial setup headache and my java fern and crypts seem to be pearling today.

So far so good!
 
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