MTS Population control? - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #1 of 14 Old 02-12-2011, 10:52 PM Thread Starter
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MTS Population control?

I am sure there is no way to actually "control" the population of MTS in your tank other than there or not... but i was thinking...

I have a 50 gal with MTS, the population is not THAT bad ATM but i know it will get worse.

Now i read somewhere that 3 or so assassin snails per 10 gal will wipe them out, but the MTS are good for the tank.

So if i just get say 4 Assassin snails for my 50 gal will they keep the population down but not destroy them all? because i do like them just not TONS of them.
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post #2 of 14 Old 02-13-2011, 06:30 PM
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I think the problem, from a predator/prey standpoint is that your predator (assassin snails) would reproduce to the maximum capacity supported by the prey items (MTS). My estimate is the assassins would breed to a significant population and, eventually, wipe out the MTS. The assassin population would likely crash at that point. This is based on predator/prey interactions in a closed setting with no prey refugia - NOT any personal experience with assassin snails, so I could be totally off-base!

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post #3 of 14 Old 02-13-2011, 06:35 PM
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One additional note - I don't know if the gravel serves as a refugia for the MTS to hide from the assassin snail. If so, you may maintain a population along with the assassin snails. Hopefully, someone with more expertise on the snail biology will reply to this thread!

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post #4 of 14 Old 02-13-2011, 07:11 PM
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Overfeeding is the ONLY cause of a MTS population explosion. If you are finding more snails than you want, you really need to cut back on feeding. That in and of itself WILL control their numbers. I do not recommend getting something to clean up the problem, but rather fix the problem by changing your habits. The tank will be in better shape because of it.

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post #5 of 14 Old 02-13-2011, 10:33 PM
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I concur with jaysee, even though I tend to feed too heavily in my tanks also
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post #6 of 14 Old 02-14-2011, 03:20 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DKRST View Post
...... even though I tend to feed too heavily in my tanks also
As do I, and they all have healthy MTS populations. The question is how many is too many, and the answer is up to the individual.

125 - BGK, chanchito cichlid, pictus cats, silver dollars, palmas bichir
125 - cichlids (severums, bolivian rams, chocolate), rainbows ( turquoise, red), loaches (angelicus, zebra, kuhli and horseface), plecos (BN, RL and clown), denison barbs, tiretrack eel, pearl gouramis, betta
90 - Congo tetras, african knife, upside down cats, spotted ctenopoma, kribensis, delhezzi bichir
2.5 - betta
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post #7 of 14 Old 02-14-2011, 05:12 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jaysee View Post
Overfeeding is the ONLY cause of a MTS population explosion. If you are finding more snails than you want, you really need to cut back on feeding. That in and of itself WILL control their numbers. I do not recommend getting something to clean up the problem, but rather fix the problem by changing your habits. The tank will be in better shape because of it.
So true. Back this up with heavy manual removal and baiting and it will cut down the population by a significant margin.

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post #8 of 14 Old 02-15-2011, 10:01 PM Thread Starter
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Ok let me be honest, i Want to get some assassin snails. they are nice looking and the fact that hey eat other snails is cool to me.

So i guess my question should be... If i get a few Assassin Snails, will they wipe out the MTS population in my 50 gal.? and how many would be a good number?
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post #9 of 14 Old 02-15-2011, 10:08 PM
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No, they cannot wipe out all the snails. They are far from capable of doing that. A lone adult assassin snail can consume only 1 adult snail of the same size or 2-3 young ones in a day. The ratio is not too big to make a significant impact in their population.

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post #10 of 14 Old 02-16-2011, 12:07 PM Thread Starter
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Ok new Question. What size are they usually before they start breeding?

2% are up to 1/2" and 98% of the MTS in my Aquarium are very small because when i got the aquarium the gravel was REALLY dirty and i washed it out, then when putting it back into the tank i thought she had WAY to much in there and dumped 1/2 of it in the garbage... and so went a lot of the snail population too.

That was before i realized they were more than just a "parasite" snail and decided to keep them and before i knew they lived in the gravel in the day time.
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