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Old 11-29-2012, 09:41 PM   #1 
Join Date: Nov 2012
Location: Ohio
My snails are languishing

Hi all. I'm the crazy new member poster. Now I have a question about my snails...they are not in my betta tanks, I have two in my 55gallon topical.

I had an outbreak of gill flukes in my rainbowfish and treated for both parasites (Tetra Paraiste guard) and bacteria (Tetracycline). Treatment concluded last week, and I have been doing crazy wc's since then - we're talking 50% changes over and over and over again. No more losses and none of the symptoms returned.

Well, now both of my cute blue mystery snails are ailing. They are at the bottom of the tank, sometimes partially exposed, other times firmly in thier shells. This has gone on for three days, and neither has moved or eaten since then. Ammonia is 0, nitrite is 0, nitrate is about 10. Could it have been the medicine? I find it remarkable that they got sick at the same time and are behaving the same way. I have removed them and put them in quarantine for now, but no change in behavior.

Does anyone have any ideas about what this could be? This tank has always been so stable. And now, I lost two rainbows and now the snails are sick. It stinks. Anyway, thanks for any help you may offer.

And, of course, this is has to happen just as my shipment of baby bettas is due to arrive. Fate is not my friend.
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Old 11-29-2012, 09:59 PM   #2 
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Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Ontario, CA
Sometimes snails are inactive for days on end. I'd have left them where they were. I'm sure all the upset with the tank stressed them some & they'll probably come out of it. I'd imagine they were more sensitive to the meds since they are more sensitive to water parameters. I've heard people say their snails didn't move for a week or more. I've learned to leave them be unless there's something obviously wrong.
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Old 11-29-2012, 10:48 PM   #3 
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Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Newfoundland
It's likely it was the medicine (parasite one). Most are toxic to inverts of any kind. Unfortunately I'm not sure what can be done to perk them up. Shame, I love blues.

Edit: are there any other signs of trouble besides inactivity? Any sliming? Will they eat?

Last edited by Silverfang; 11-29-2012 at 10:50 PM.
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Old 11-30-2012, 10:06 AM   #4 
Join Date: Nov 2012
Location: Ohio
Thanks for your replies.

No, there are no other symptoms aside from inactivity. It almost looks like paralysis...the bigger snail keeps trying to open itself fully, and it looks like it's antennae are working, but can't fully unfold, if that makes any sense. Or maybe just weakness, IDK. They are both not eating, even with the algae wafer right up under their shells.

The smaller one has just given up, shell is slightly open with no movement. Bigger one keeps trying. Sigh. I will keep an eye on them. I wish there was more I could do.

I was doing some research last night on snails, and apple (mystery snails) really aren't the best snail for tropical's too warm with no dormancy period. So, if these don't recover, perhaps I will choose a better species to begin with, and try to avoid having to medicate the whole tank.
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Old 12-02-2012, 01:25 PM   #5 
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Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: Minneapolis, Minnesota
I would move them out of the tank, it's possible for medication residue to remain attached to the substrate. If it's affecting the snails so much you may need to redo the substrate.

It's also possible that the timing is coincidental, and the snails are trying to go into winter hibernation mode. Mystery snails bury themselves in cool mud in the winter in the wild. They are known to burn out after about a year in captivity if they don't get to do this.
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