Originally Posted by Tha Bizness
It is a very fascinating tank. My others seem boring to this one now with all the non-fish life swimming around. This is the only tank out of 4 without fish. I spend the most time looking it it now.
Yesterday I found a different type of snail. Its not a bladder or MTS. These are more of a circular type of shell instead of a bladder or cone spiral. I saw a few of them climbing around. I guess they reproduce slower and haven't really noticed them before now as they are big enough to spot... I guess they hitchhiked on some plants I bought.
I also found another small hydra. I'm going to get a magnifying glass today and see if I can see any shape to the brownish fast moving specs and search for other life. I wish I had a microscope.
Another question I have is could some of these smallish creatures and worms appear - as in not hitchhiked on a plant or fish but maybe naturally occurring in bodies of water or carried in on dust or something? IDK... just a thought.
To add more info about this tank - At one point I used to have guppies in this tank along with the RCS but moved them out a couple weeks ago. My thoughts are that they and their fry kept this worm and other glass crawling life in check. Now they are gone there are no predators and the population has exploded from that. The guppies where picking off the baby shrimp so they had to get moved. I used to take the guppy fry as snacks for another fish tank so I guess they (the guppies) were thinking a eye for a eye when it came to my RCS...
The new type of snail you're seeing: could it be ramshorn? Along with pond and MTS, Ramshorn would have a spot on the Mt Rushmore of most commonly introduced snails.
Most likely, I'd guess that all of these unexpected inhabitants arrived on plants or possibly in your substrate. In any event, it seems they appreciate your water parameters!
I did a little poking around and it seems the hydra could be a real threat to small RCS. What's more, they reproduce asexually when food is abundant, so if they do like the RCS (or any other forms of life your tank has to offer), it could get out of hand quickly. On the other hand, some people claimed to have had hydra and RCS simultaneously with seemingly no shrimplet predation.
Among the favorite sources of prey for wild hydra are cyclops
. I wonder if that might help ID your mystery guest?
Because you've established this as an experimental "see what happens" tank, I'd selfishly prefer if you did just that! I'd love to hear updates as this microcosmic ecosystem continues to unfurl before your eyes. Then again, I'm not the one who invested in RCS!
If you do decide to rid yourself of the hydra, nematodes, and other uninvited guests, check out the spixi snail. This might be a good advocate as they have an appetite for hydra, pond snail egg sacs, etc. but won't go after your shrimplets.
Whatever you do, DO NOT put anything with copper in there!