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Old 05-24-2010, 06:12 PM   #1 
addiep8908
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Snails

I am getting a betta fish on Friday and I have a question. My mom has a tetra tank with some snails in it. I find that they help maintain a good water quality in her tank and I was wondering if I could put a few in with my betta. I have heard that bettas eat snails, which would be fine for keeping the population down. I would never have a huge amount of them in there with the fish, just a few to take care of the crumbs. Would the snails be okay with the betta?
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Old 05-24-2010, 06:16 PM   #2 
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Snails go fine with bettas, but they do poop ALOT so I don't think they improve water quality. You should have at least a 5 gal tank if you want to keep a snail with you betta.
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Old 05-24-2010, 11:41 PM   #3 
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ooh! so if i buy two snails and plop them in both sides of my split 10 gallon they'll be fine? ^-^ sorry to steal thread i was about to post my own but luckily i read this first.
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Old 05-25-2010, 02:02 AM   #4 
addiep8908
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I have also heard that bettas eat snails. Is that true?
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Old 05-25-2010, 01:46 PM   #5 
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Depends on what kind of snail you have. They will often eat tiny snails like pond snails, one of my girls rips them right out of the shell and eats them!

But Most bettas won't bother a mystery snail or a larger snail like that. An important thing to know:

SNAILS WILL NOT CLEAN THE TANK! (Sorry for the caps, just making sure you all get it LOL) They will eat some algae, but that's about it, You must feed them veggies and algae wafers. They can't just survive off the things in your tank usually. My Mystery snail does a lousy job at eating all the algae she just eats little bits when she wants to. The only way they "Clean" is they will eat left over food on the bottom of the tank.
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Old 05-25-2010, 02:03 PM   #6 
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I agree with DH. Its a common misconception that snails help keep the tank clean. Especially snails like apple and mysteries.. they are very messy.

Smaller species like nerite, malaysian trumpet snails, and pond snails have less bioload but still don't negate the necessity of water changes.
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Old 05-25-2010, 02:12 PM   #7 
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I wanna add though, Pond snails are monster diatom eaters, if you have that problem. But they DO poop like crazy. I mean, like, megapoop. So you should gravel vac weekly.
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Old 05-25-2010, 02:13 PM   #8 
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Also pond snails and MTS (malaysian trumpet snails) reproduce like crazy if you over feed your tank. Its very easy to get an outbreak if your not careful.
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Old 05-25-2010, 07:53 PM   #9 
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All in all, there are quite a number of cons with a snail. For me, cons outweigh the pros (but I still consider them anyway, ha).

Snails don't really maintain water quality nor make it better... They add onto your bioload, making it worse if anything (but all fish do that anyways). Like above, they're not good algae cleaners, save for some including the nerite. Some snails do this, some snails do that. Mystery snails seem useless unless you don't mind adding something that could take the bioload of another fish (am I overexaggerating?)...although they're cute.

But in the sense of just being a tankmate (and not being used for a tank-cleaner or anything like that), snails seem to work out well. THere are always exceptions as well. Go ahead and try ... and importantly - what type of snail are you going to add (OP)?
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Old 05-25-2010, 11:42 PM   #10 
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Hmmm... I am really not sure what type of snails my mom has. They are tiny and cute though. I would never negate changing tank water because of them. I don't want anything to harm my fishies, most of all my tank water.
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