It's a scavenger like most other snails, so yes, it CAN help with waste cleanup.
The "nuisance" part comes in that it will leave little masses of jelly-like egg sacs everywhere in the tank. And they have a very fast reproductive rate, so the least bit of overfeeding leads to a massive population explosion.
When I tore down my 29g, there was seriously a cereal bowl FULL of pond/bladder snails. I never over fed my fish; in fact they've only been fed once a week over the last month. Somehow, there was still a million snails...
I can only wonder what kinda of bioload that number of snails can induce...
"The fact that snails eat all these unwanted substances in the tank should make them a valuable organism to the fishkeeper. They're basically taking algae and other organic material and producing it into snail poop, which is easily filtered out or siphoned out with a gravel vacuum. They're handing you unwanted algae and uneaten fish food, all wrapped up in a nice poopy package!"
Well he has evaded me. he was happily cleaning the filter intake when i last saw him. but after i decided to remove him, he vanished. They must have mind reading abilities /gasp. lol
oh well, the test tank is just a 10 gallon... I scanned the 29 a couple hours after lights out, not seeing any other visible snails yet, I'm crossing my fingers that he was the only one to make it past the plant washing..
If more do pop up i should ask that fish store to loan me a squad of clown loaches for a week. That, or buy 3, and just keep swapping them out for smaller ones as they grow (they are pretty fun to watch).
Anyone know of a smaller snail eating fish that is friendly to other fish? (I'm surprised breeders haven't made a "dwarf" clown loach yet)
Yoyo loaches are reported to eat snails and stay smaller than clown's but I can't say first hand as I already have eight clown's. My clown's don't seem to grow all that fast so I'm happy with them and as fat as they are they're happy in my tanks. I too received pond snails with a plant and within months I find them in 1/2 my tanks. So much for not cross contaminating my systems. LOL
For the true snail haters reading this thread Flubendazole (wormer) indicated for Protozoa treatment in fish (I'm now using it annually on my breeding angels and all new fish) has the side benefit of eliminating snails. All snails will be gone in two treatments, Eliminates a broad range of internal pests in my fish, plant safe along with being reported safe with several shrimp species also. Hard for me to find starting out but more than worth having.(imo)
well apparently this little guy is infertile, or just doesn't get along with himself well enough to want to reproduce with himself. lol That, or I'm just so great at feeding my fish that there isn't enough spare food for it to want to multiply.
I couldn't bring myself to squish it, i just tossed him into a 10 gallon tank i have. two weeks have passed and still no babies.
I keep them or some form of snail in all my tanks for cleaning and diversity of life. If your LFS will "rent" and loach to knock the population down if it get out of control, id go that route. I keep yoyos around and they get switched from tank to tank to do their duty as the need arises.