Dwarf puffers you say?
I know the big ones can crunch the shells, but often the small ones just grab hold of the snail and shake it (like a dog with a chew toy) until the snail is dead.
I'd go with ramshorns and pond snails with a slight preference towards the pond, since they don't have a "door" on their shell to cover their opening.
MTS are probably too sneaky to be a viable food source-
you drop them in the tank and they'll burry themselves. (since they're nocturnal)
Ramshorns seem to be easier to breed though.. I put some in my tank about a month ago and I'm already seeing babies. :)
(If you order some plants from SweetAquatics.com you can ask them to send you a couple dozen snails. They'll do it for free.
Thats how I got all my snails. :) I don't think they're on the plants... they must clean them or something before they ship them.
I don't think they should be the staple of the diet, you'll have to buy some other foods... Maybe some bloodworms and some slow-sinking granules and maybe some bloodworms or something. (I assume they feed from mid-water/bottom?)
I'd say snails could probably make up about 15-30% of their diet. They will still need vitamins from packaged foods.
(If you wanted to "gut-load" the snails it might be different.. Feed the snails high-quality fish food and place them in a shallow container of water with vitamins added... but if you're going to do all that why not just feed the puffers the food and vitamins, ya know?
If the puffers don't like "hunting" you might have to crush the snails for'em. (ramshorns can usually be crushed between your fingernails of you do it hard enough. MTS will break your nails. Dunno about pond...
If you have more than one tank, I'd just introduce the snails to one of your other tanks. They're great scavengers, and whenever you see one on the front glass just drop it in with the puffer.
Last edited by redchigh; 03-24-2010 at 04:05 PM..