How to clear plants of snails - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #1 of 5 Old 07-14-2010, 03:13 PM Thread Starter
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Post How to clear plants of snails

I just bought some new plants and was just wondering how do you get rid of all of the snails including the eggs because i cant do it all by hand (went mad bought a load of plants).

Thanks in advance.

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post #2 of 5 Old 07-14-2010, 05:41 PM
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clearing snails from new plants

Here are 2 recipes I have saved on a index card to rid new plants of snails.


Prepare a soak of 1 gal. water to 2 TBS. of Alum which is found in the spice section of the grocery store. Soak for 2-3 days in a bucket then rinse well before adding to tank. This is good for delicate plants also.

Bleach Treatment-

1 part Bleach to 19 parts water. Soak for 2 min. then rinse well. Not good for delicate plants. This also removes any strange algae on the plant leaves. Rinse well with reg. water before addiing to your tank also works for tank decorations but not on any wood that will be added to a tank.

Snails are always on most plants that you buy at the store. You should QT your plants like you do fish as they might have parasites besides snails on them.

Last edited by eileen; 07-14-2010 at 05:52 PM.
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post #3 of 5 Old 07-14-2010, 07:09 PM
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I appreciate that many aquarists rinse plants in this or that, I never have. One has to be careful about harming the plants as eileen points out. But more importantly perhaps, I consider snails very useful in a planted tank.

Here's a paragraph cited form Peter Hiscock's book, concerning snails:
Generally speaking, a small and controlled snail population is beneficial in a planted aquarium. Snails are scavengers, so as well as eating algae, they will also feed on any waste organic matter, be it in the form of fish waste and fish food or plant waste in the substrate. As they remove some of the organic debris found in the top layer of the substrate, which is not useful to plants, they reduce levels of harmful bacteria. In addition, they continually move the substrate about, preventing algal growth.
On the last point, Malaysian snails also move throughout the substrate right down to the bottom, which allows better water circulation to bring nutrients to the roots, and maintaining a healthy colony of good bacteria, and certainly helping to prevent compaction of the substrate.

Diana Walstad writes,
Although snails are frequently disparaged by some aquarium hobbyists, they are actually quite useful in the aquarium. First, snails clean plant leaves of debris, algae, and bacteria. Second, they greatly speed up the decomposition process, so that nutrients are recycled much more quickly to plants. I keep snails in all of my aquariums.

Byron Hosking, BMus, MA
Vancouver, BC, Canada

The aquarist is one who must learn the ways of the biologist, the chemist, and the veterinarian. [unknown source]

Something we all need to remember: The fish you've acquired was quite happy not being owned by you, minding its own business. If you’re going to take it under your wing then you’re responsible for it. Every aspect of its life is under your control, from water quality and temperature to swimming space. [Nathan Hill in PFK]
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post #4 of 5 Old 07-14-2010, 07:44 PM
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This is true but I had to do the Alum treatment as I got some bad snails like Ramshorn that do harm to my live plants in my tub pond outside and inside aquariums. They put holes in the leaves. I do have tiny snails in my sand.

I think they are Assassin snail babies as I used to have 13 Assassin snails that I moved to a smaller tank and rehomed 9 of them after getting two Yo Yo loaches for my big tank. I was not sure if the Yo Yo Loach would eat my Assassin snails so I moved them. I have assassin snail babies in two different colors solid dark brown and the dark brown and yellow striped. I thought they were MTS but I think they are Assassin snail babies as they do not have the long spiral shell like a MTS snail and have the long tube nose thing. They do not harm my live plants so they do not bother me.Assassin snail take a long time to mature and you need a male and a female to produce 1 egg pod and they eat protein food snails are one and protein fish food or earthworm sticks if no snails are available for them to eat. I think these Assassin snails are really pretty looking and it's neat to see them make a kill of a snail. I must still have a male and female after rehoming most of them as I still see egg pods on my plants by them. Pond snails can be a big problem as they breed like crazy and you find egg sacks everywhere. Some snails are fine.

Last edited by eileen; 07-14-2010 at 07:46 PM.
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post #5 of 5 Old 07-15-2010, 12:48 AM
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some platties and other fish will eat the small snails
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