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Old 03-16-2012, 12:25 PM   #1 
bananafish
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Surprise! It's a snail?

Found a tiny snail in my 5-gallon tank last night... I bought a java fern a few days ago and plunked it in the tank (tank is cycling). Last night when I went to test the parameters, I saw a tiny, beetle-looking guy crawling down the stalk of one of my silk plants. What kind of snail could he be?? He was no larger than half a centimeter or quarter of an inch. The husband named him Hubert, so I guess he's staying, unless the cycling/ammonia kills him off.
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Old 03-16-2012, 01:37 PM   #2 
Draug Isilme
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If you can, try to get pictures of the little guy and keep an eye on your tank- if you saw one, there's always a possibility of more and if you're not sure of what type it is, it could very well be a hermaphrodite- which in turn can definitely cause problems if your not careful; even more so if they're the type that eat live plants instead of the typical algae/decaying matter.... So post pics if possible and you should probably start searching on your own for different snail types and what their personalities/temperaments/natures are...
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Old 03-16-2012, 01:39 PM   #3 
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Also, snails usually have large bioloads... So definitely keep an eye on ammonia levels, even after cycling if the snail (or snails) are still running rampant..... And if they're still around by the time you put your fish in, keep an eye out for your fish's belly, as they sometimes think of tiny snails as good snackin's in between their designated meal(s) xD
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Old 03-16-2012, 02:22 PM   #4 
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It's most likely a pond snail that came with you're plant...
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Old 03-16-2012, 04:43 PM   #5 
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pond snails are actually quite beneficial. They eat algae like a champ. But if you have an abundance of food, they will multiply like weeds.
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Old 03-16-2012, 09:00 PM   #6 
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Name that snail!

Here's the little dude I found in my tank... I managed to get him out and into a small cup until we can ID him. I present to you Hubert:



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Old 03-16-2012, 10:02 PM   #7 
Draug Isilme
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I'm not an expert with snails, but I say it definitely looks like a pond snail. And yeah, they can be beneficial... Just make sure to keep them in check, especially since you have a 5g, otherwise you'll be overrun and more than likely have to worry about ammonia spikes even with plants.
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Old 03-16-2012, 11:18 PM   #8 
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I actually found a tiny snail in my goldfish's 5 gal tank today too xD I also recently purchased some new plants for his tank. I couldn't catch it though since it was so tiny and by the time I knew it, it had disappeared from the spot I saw him at.
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Old 03-17-2012, 02:46 AM   #9 
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I use pond snails and ramshorn snails in all my tanks. I was under the impression that snails actually had quite a small bio load? I could be mistaken but my fry never seem harmed by the abundance of snail waste. I actually am setting up a breeding program for my snails so I have enough for all my tanks and to sell to people getting into breeding.
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Old 03-17-2012, 01:52 PM   #10 
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About 90% of the things I come across with, people say snails have large bioloads.... My opinion, though, is it seems like it depends on the size, the type, and of course, the amount of creatures you have in whatever size tank you have.... It's more of a theory, really, 'cause to me if it's the size, then why is it that all gold fish are noted for their large bioload when commons are 12" and fancies are 6-8"? And then with snails, apple snails have a huge bioload because of how big they get (apparently 2-6" depending on the type(?)) and when I first got my apple snail, he was uuuuuber tiny.. I was cycling my 5g and put him in a small .25g at the time- I was gonna do 100% water changes every day, but jesus O.o that jar stunk to high heaven within a 12 hour period so I had to cycle my tank WITH my snail... He was less than 1/2 an inch, too..... and then you have other species that grow to an inch or less and I've heard both sides of the story where 'they have big waste loads' and 'no, they have tiny bioloads because they're so small!' So unless there's hardcore evidence, I don't think there's a 100% way of knowing and the most efficient way to tell is by knowing various amounts of other peoples experience as well as your own- then come to the best conclusion that is most suitable..
One of the reasons I don't care about pond snails is while they are benificial in some sense, there's still the negatives that outweigh it for me, but that's just me. It's mainly cause while I can control the amount of fish and apple snails I put in my tank, I have to keep on my toes for something like a pond snail since they breed like rabbits and are very hard to get rid of... To me, they're just a variable factor that can tilt the scale off balance more easily than when it's more or less the aquarist in control. They might have a small bioload, but if they breed consecutively and you let up on your routine, I can see them overtaking and causing ammonia spikes... especially with smaller tanks and regardles of their size.
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