Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

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River 04-25-2010 03:42 PM

Freshwater clams
Hi! I recently read an article on keeping freshwater clams for natural filtration. Anyone have success keeping these? Thanks!


35 gallon tall freshwater tetra tank
30 gallon terrarium for amphibians
55 gallon reef tank
2 betta tanks

Mikaila31 04-25-2010 07:12 PM

They are filter feeders. They would filter organics out of the water, but I would worry about the abundance of food available to them. Also some species have parasitic larva that will effect your fish if you by chance achieve breeding. They don't really do natrual filtration though. They eat food and produce waste just like any fish, snail, or invert. Even if they didn't filter out the organics in the water they would still break down into wastes and be converted by the filter. The only real natural filtration for freshwater are plants.

iamntbatman 04-27-2010 03:25 AM

The main issue with clams (apart from the parasitism that Mikaila mentioned) is that they're very difficult to feed. It seems they tend to die pretty quickly unless they have a constant supply of green water, something which is difficult to achieve in a fish tank and not exactly something you'd want even if you could pull it off.

mordalphus 04-28-2010 12:09 AM

I'm wondering if you could get powdered spirulina (I use it in my morning smoothies) and put it in the water... i use it to feed brine shrimp and mosquito larvae. Turns the water bluish green in seconds! After all, it's algae, I'm sure it'd be better than nothing...

Click here for spirulina link

That's for a 1 pound bag, which lasts ME (a human), about 4 months. A teaspoon will turn a 5 gallon bucket green.

Just a thought... Although I wouldn't even THINK about turning my beautiful tank into a green mess of free-floating particulate algae. IMO, clams are fun in theory, but will not replace a filter or make you happy.

-- Liam

iamntbatman 04-28-2010 05:25 AM

Hmm, that is interesting and might be worth a shot if one was really interested in keeping freshwater clams. I'd still be cautious due to the chance of parasitism though.

mordalphus 04-28-2010 08:36 AM

golden clams, aka asian freshwater clams, do not have a larval stage... They have no parasitic stage.

safe for fish.

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