Why did my Mystery Snail die? - Betta Fish and Betta Fish Care
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post #1 of 4 (permalink) Old 09-28-2013, 11:12 AM Thread Starter
JennNP's Avatar
Join Date: Jul 2013
Location: Humboldt County, California
Posts: 156
Why did my Mystery Snail die?

I know Mystery Snails are a pretty popular companion for Bettas, and was wondering if maybe someone can come up with an explanation.

So, I set up my tank in early July, I think. I had an undergravel filter. Last weekend, after an awesome garage sale trip and a quick stop at PetCo, I had everything I needed to build myself a sponge filter. I took both Cesar (my Betta) and my Mystery Snail out of the tank. When I removed the UGF an UNBELIEVABLE amount of debris came up. I was quite shocked. I am very diligent with my gravel vac. Anyway, I got out as much as I could. I would gravel vac until I was out of water, put more water in, suck up more stuff, etc until it was nice and clean.

I acclimated Cesar and my snail the exact same to the new (super clean :D) water. Cesar has been doing just fine ever since. My snail, not so much. The next morning he was floating. I read they could do that because of adverse conditions. Well I figured this is the cleanest the water has probably ever been in, so it couldn't be water quality. The next morning he had sunk, so I gave him a Spinach leaf. I'm not sure if he ate any of it though. So all throughout this past week he'd be floating, or sunk on the bottom, off and on. One day he was out of his shell and cruising around, but then he'd go back to floating. Today he was officially dead (smell test) at the bottom of the tank.

Any ideas? What could have happened? I'd like to get another snail or perhaps a shrimp (I had a shrimp but he died...). But apparently, the only thing I can keep alive is my Betta

Last edited by JennNP; 09-28-2013 at 11:13 AM. Reason: Grammar
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post #2 of 4 (permalink) Old 09-29-2013, 08:31 AM
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Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Ontario, CA
Posts: 3,597
Have you been testing your water since you did such a thorough cleaning? Snails can be very sensitive to water parameters more so than fish. How old was your snail? Mine have never lived longer than a year. I've also had them not survive a drastic change in environment; switching tanks for example. Bottom line, not sure you can pinpoint the exact reason for the death.
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post #3 of 4 (permalink) Old 09-29-2013, 11:20 AM Thread Starter
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Join Date: Jul 2013
Location: Humboldt County, California
Posts: 156
I haven't been testing my water, been going through some financial issues and won't be able to afford a test kit for a few more days. I've been changing the water more than OFL recommends to be safe.

Not sure how old the snail was, I only had him for a few months but he was pretty large.

I guess we'll never know. It's good to know I didn't do something incredibly wrong that caused his demise though, so thank you!
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post #4 of 4 (permalink) Old 10-25-2013, 10:54 PM
Kumo's Avatar
Join Date: Oct 2013
Posts: 163
I don't recommend gravel for tank bottoms. The brief time I had it, so much gunk and debris would pile up within the gravel, even with good gravel cleaning with a gravel vaccum. I recommend sand.

It could be the water parameters changed so much from unhealthy water to new, clean water that it killed him. That's what happened with my otos a few months ago. The snail could have been so used to the unhealthy water that it shocked his system when he had a new, clean environment.

Can you buy water test parameters separately? That's what I'm doing. I'm buying each tester individually (pH, ammonia, nitrite, etc...) because it's just too much money to spend all at once for me.
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