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Thread: Missing snails

  1. #1
    Senior Member scooby's Avatar
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    Missing snails

    OK so I've recently added some snails to my system and over the last couple of days I've notices the snails missing but the shells left. I don't have any crabs, just a couple of perks, 2x peppermint shrimp. I have noticed small rice sized critters early in the morning or when the lights just come on (of course then they scatter!). They appear to have the shape of shrimp but who knows, still so tiny and somewhat transparent.

    So what's eating my snails? Brisstleworms? (I've notice a couple of really small ones in some of the LR during feeding time)

    It's only a 30g, 20lbls LR CC bed and all parameters appear ok.

  2. #2
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    Scooby what kind of snails? If they are Turbo's or Astaea's I find they fall over frequently and can't right themselves. If they stay in this helpless position too-long they are sitting ducks for the Shrimp and they will take advantage of the situation.

  3. #3
    Senior Member scooby's Avatar
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    2 of the snails were margaritas and one was a bumblebee. When I found them, they were off the glass on the CC but bottoms down so not flipped.

  4. #4
    AC Partner MomRules's Avatar
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    Scooby, regular bristleworms- the pinkish ones with white bristles- won't kill your snails but will clean up the remains. It could be the snails weren't acclimated slowly enough and suffered internal damge and died. Do you have other snails in your system that you have had for awhile?
    Gail in Nova Scotia

  5. #5
    Senior Member scooby's Avatar
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    Yes there is a few. I'm leaning towards maybe your first comment of acclimation. I lost 2 others that just seemed to die with a day or so of putting them it. I did use the drip method prior to adding them but maybe I needed to slow down the rate.

    The bristleworms that I have are small and pinkish. I only see the end coming out of the LR during feeding time but I guess they could have ventured out at night to clean up on some snails. Hopefully I don't loose anymore.

  6. #6
    Senior Member reefmutt's Avatar
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    Just to add to already good advice, I'm just throwing this out there... You may want to check you alkalinity. I've found that a low alk can knock off snails as well as almost anything else in a reef. Ones that have acclimated to the tank may last longer but new ones don't deal as well with a shock-even if dripped.
    Matt.

    Old system torn down to make a playroom.. planning a 62x42x28 high

  7. #7
    Senior Member ALRHA's Avatar
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    Re: Missing snails

    Originally posted by scooby
    I have noticed small rice sized critters early in the morning or when the lights just come on (of course then they scatter!). They appear to have the shape of shrimp but who knows, still so tiny and somewhat transparent.
    could these be pyramid snails? i remember when i had a similar problem, and these little snail looking things on the glass at night, were suspected. they somehow get into the shells of the snails and kill them. i got a six-line wrasse which seems to have taken care of those pyramid snails since.

    as far as their sensitivity to Alk, i never knew about that, its always good to know. i find that many of us are more lax in our care of snails and the like (as far as acclimating and stuff) simply because there are cheap. we would likely be much more careful when acclimating a $100 fish. but having to constantly buy more snails can begin to add up, not to mention it wouldnt be fair to keep killing them.
    Albert
    My Photos

  8. #8
    Senior Member scooby's Avatar
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    Well you are right about the price. They do add up however as you also pointed out, the main problem is I don't want to introduce anything into my tank giving it a death sentance. So far since the other day the others are hanging in there. If they continue to die off I'll definitaly post again looking for further advice.

    Thanks everyone.

  9. #9
    Senior Member tiffany's Avatar
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    How does the alk affect snails? is it through the ph?
    "The significant problems we face cannot be solved at the same level of thinking we were at when we created them."
    - Albert Einstein (1879-1955)

  10. #10
    Senior Member reefmutt's Avatar
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    Alkalinity, or the balance of carbonates and bicarbonates, and all of the elements and minerals that swirl around and go back and forth in that balance (hydrogen, calcium, magnesium for example) is in my opinion, the basic building block or platform from which almost all reef life springs.....is that one sentence?!?..
    I am not a chemist so I have no scientific background here, just what I've tried to distill from reading way too my articles on the subject and from my experiance.
    It seems to me that a minimum alkalinity-that found in the ocean.2.5 meq or 7dkh is necessary for encrusting animals to lay down new shell or skeleton. On a chemical level that balance needs to be there for the transfer of such things as calcium ions from the water to the animals shell/skeleton, allowing them to grow. Without that minimun alkalinity, growth stops. As well, the ph is most probably, but not necessarily, too low which isn't all that good for anyone either!
    If the low alkalinity happens over time, as it usually does, some animals may adapt a little and then die more slowly. Newly added animals may not handle the change and die sooner.
    All this long windedness to say that proper alkalinity allows things to grow, when all other parameters are in order, as well as help hold a steady ph.
    However, if the animals can't grow they can't survive.
    Matt.

    Old system torn down to make a playroom.. planning a 62x42x28 high

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