November 16, 2019, 08:15:56 am

To Snail or Not?

Started by TheProfessoR, March 06, 2019, 12:25:17 am

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Would you keep MTS or Ramshorn snails in your tank?

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March 06, 2019, 12:25:17 am Last Edit: March 06, 2019, 02:11:29 am by TheProfessoR
I am now and again asked if snails should be kept alongside shrimp in an aquarium.

Fact is, it does not take me very long to answer a resounding yes and in most of my shrimp tanks can be found Malaysian Trumpet Snails along with varying hues of Ramshorn Snails.

Along with those, a couple of my tanks also include the common pond snail, that found their way in on the backs of plants and have now established healthy populations over time.

OK, why would anyone wish to include these snails in their dwarf shrimp aquariums?  Well, as it happens, they are awesome scavengers and they help keep your tank clean by consuming any uneaten food, algae, decaying plant matter and any poop they find lying about, and in the case of the Malaysian Trumpet Snails, they also aerate your substate, a bit like a farmer ploughing a field.

Those snails mentioned will not eat your baby shrimp and for the most part, will not bother your live plants and their numbers can be regulated by observing one golden rule, DO NOT OVERFEED!

From my perspective, there really is no down side to including these varieties in your tank, that is, as long as you are happy with their appearance as they go about their daily lives and perhaps don't mind a few Ramshorn egg deposits adorning the glass here and there. These deposits incidentally, will actually drop off the glass when the baby snails hatch and will sink to the bottom to be consumed or vacuumed up. 

There are many hobbyists now, selectively breeding Ramshorn Snails for new colors, with red, brown, pink, gold, jade, ivory and blue being some of the hues offered, with the rarer colors fetching substantial sums when/if sold.

Bottom line, these snails are easy to breed and a self sustaining population will be developed quite quickly, so if you can live with the sight of snails wandering about your tank and would like to avail yourself of the numerous benefits these particular creatures have to offer offer, then I can recommend them wholeheartedly.