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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Please reply on how I can kill off these tiny (Can barely see with eyesight, you need to flash a light in there) bugs. Even if you don't have time to read the full story below.

I have a five gallon fresh water tank, kept at 78 degrees, no filter. All i have in the tank is one black mystery snail. Boring, I know, but I wanted to keep the bioload to a minimum, and I love mystery snails. He's been happily growing and active for 4 months now. I change the water every week, 2 gallons each time. I feed him very little, only a crack off an algae wafer once a day, and I place it in the middle of the tank everytime, making sure it doesn't drift. I make sure to vacuum the middle/front very well every week.
I just tested for ammonia today (2 days after last water change) and it is absolutely at 0, this thing is as clear and light yellow as can be.

This last week I've noticed my snail slow/sluggish and not active much. Finally today, I noticed he didn't eat his tab from last night, and THATS a big no-no. I had a curiosity to flash a light on him (I don't have any light on the tank, just natural light as its near a window), and there they were. I can see these little bug like creatures in my tank, scurrying about. Very small, I didn't notice without the light. Eating his tab too.

I'm convinced they're bad, and that he's on the verge of dying. I've seen these tiny things before. A year ago I had a ten gallon fail, and they were in there too. Last week I stupidly dipped scissors in my 5gal to move a tab of food for my snail, and after I realized these scissors were the same ones I used on my plants for my failed 10gal. Could these bugs survive on the scissors even after at least 6 months of being dry on these scissors in storage? Whatever the case, these tiny bugs are back, and I want them dead. I'm pretty heart broken it looks like my snails going to die, hes not moving in a corner and not eating, please just tell me a way to rid these little bugs to give him some chance, or at least redemption.
 

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I think you may be over reacting to the teeny tiny bugs. Mystery snails will go through periods of inactivity . . . not moving for days sometimes. I don't think the bugs & your snails sluggishness are related. Mystery snails need a little more than the algae tabs, I used to drop a whole tab per snail 2-3 times a week as well as feed blanched veggies such as cucumber, kale or zucchini; they need calcium for a healthy shell.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I wish I was overreacting, but the signs don't add up. Keep in mind I have had him since January, he's never acted like this (stays near top, almost like he wants to get out), doesn't roam around (but he does switch places near the top), and the biggest problem, he hasn't eaten his tab going on 2 days now. All of this is exactly in occurence with the appearance of these little bugs. They also were in my 10gal over a year ago at the time that one failed. And yes, once again, the temp and water parameters are fine.

I really don't think these are the harmless types of little bugs...


P.S. Yes i know I should be feeding more variety. I have given him spinach from time to time and hes eaten it, but I havent been doing it enough. Regardless, hes NEVER let a piece of algae tab sit there overnight, let alone two nights (while the bugs are eating it)
 

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I have had teeny tiny bugs before & have not had them cause my tank to fail. To get rid of them I made sure to vacuum all of the gravel really really well with the weekly water change & fed a little bit less. Hopefully someone else will be able to better help you.
 

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Describe the bugs. Do they swim? What color are they?
Interesting to know, since I discovered some "bugs" in my 10 gallon tank using a magnifying glass. That is my only tank where I cannot keep Malaysian Trumpet Snails despite good water condition. I put them under the microscope and they looked like Cladocera (seed shrimps). And yes, they are able to survive long time on dry surfaces. I still have them on the glass tile, dry for about 2 months now, I'll try to add some water, see if they start moving.....Yuk!
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I can't really describe them well. White-ish I guess. Small, but their getting bigger, you can notice them with eye more. Hundreds of them. They kinda remind me of fruit flies. Roundish/ovular I guess. They like to crawl on surfaces more than swim, but I do see them kinda jump/glide/swim through water to get to a different surface. I looked up a pic of the name you gave, and it could be them, but Im not totally sure.

Update: My snail finally ate his tab after 2 anda half days. He's still not very active and staying near top, but hes not giving up. I'm going to put him in a 2 gallon bucket with a heater. Obviously the bugs will follow but it should buy him some time until someone can help me with maybe what product I can buy to get rid of these bugs.

Please guys, any way to get rid of them with a product please let me know cuz theres wayy too many to just be sucked through a vacuum. Ill have him in this bucket until I can get the bugs maintained.
 

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Increase your water changes & vacuuming. I personally don't like to use any chemicals unless its a last resort. I have had the bugs & they went away without chems.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Describe the bugs. Do they swim? What color are they?
Interesting to know, since I discovered some "bugs" in my 10 gallon tank using a magnifying glass. That is my only tank where I cannot keep Malaysian Trumpet Snails despite good water condition. I put them under the microscope and they looked like Cladocera (seed shrimps). And yes, they are able to survive long time on dry surfaces. I still have them on the glass tile, dry for about 2 months now, I'll try to add some water, see if they start moving.....Yuk!
UPDATE!: My marine bio professor was kind enough to look at the bugs through a microscope, and they are in fact Ostracods.

It's nice to hear that they're generally regarded as harmless especially to fish, but I have to wonder about snails. Corina savin, I find it interesting that you have the same bugs and cannot keep snails in that tank. Once again id like to point out that after having my snail for 4 months, the first time he has ever not eaten an algae tab within a day has been with the emergence of these Ostracods. He also did not want to move from being near the top of the water, when he normally moves a lot each day.

He's in a heated bucket right now, certainly not happy, but Im still unsure to put him back in the tank full of thousands of Ostracods. Does anyone know for sure that they are harmless to SNAILS? or a possible way to get rid of them? (i guess maybe a predatory fish that can fit in a 5 gal... if any...)
 

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Do you use a gravel vac on the 5g? When I had them many would get sucked up during water changes. How to eradicate them entirely, that I dont' know.
 

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I think you may be over reacting to the teeny tiny bugs. Mystery snails will go through periods of inactivity . . . not moving for days sometimes. I don't think the bugs & your snails sluggishness are related. Mystery snails need a little more than the algae tabs, I used to drop a whole tab per snail 2-3 times a week as well as feed blanched veggies such as cucumber, kale or zucchini; they need calcium for a healthy shell.
I don't know what bugs hes dealing with but theirs some bugs that ate my baby snails from the inside out they look like the bugs from the YouTube channel PleaseBe. If you know what these grey very small bugs are it would help to get information on them.
 

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The only macroscopic animal that I am aware of that is detrimental to mystery snails are planaria, a very small flatworm. Planaria mostly seen crawling on the glass, but will occasionally drift/float/glide to another location. These small (up to about 3/8" or 8-9mm) leave a toxic slime trail and the slime on their skin is toxic to mystery snails. Planaria usually come in on plants and flourish in tanks that get too much feeding. They can be very difficult to get rid of, but there is a chemical treatment that is effective.

Many other small creatures thrive in fresh water aquaria, such as your ostracods and also daphnia, copepods ('cyclops'), hydra, amoeba, paramecium and others. Most of these are harmless and can be valuable food sources for tiny fish. This site might be helpful:
Microscopic Organisms in a Drop of Pond Water

Mystery snails do go through periods of inactivity, sometimes a few days, and my own suspicion is that this is when they are building on to their shells. Mystery snails are sensitive to water quality, so it is a good idea to be careful about overfeeding and to keep up with both cleaning and water changes.
 

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I don't know what bugs hes dealing with but theirs some bugs that ate my baby snails from the inside out they look like the bugs from the YouTube channel PleaseBe. If you know what these grey very small bugs are it would help to get information on them.
Are you are referring to this video by PleaseBee?:


If so, as one of the commenters says: the animals shown are harmless "springtails". PleaseBee is confusing 'cause and effect' here.

Along with isopods, springtails are popular and valuable cleanup animals in a "bioactive" terrarium or vivarium setup and they are not attacking the snail, they are only cleaning up. They will eat organic debris from all surfaces, even from nails' skin and shells, and even eat parts of the droppings of other small animals, hence the cleanup value. Those we see inside the dead snails are just cleaning up the carcass. These are also not aquatic animals, they are terrestrial and are found in moist areas of dry land. In short, animals like these springtails in the video are not killing your aquatic snails. The guy posting the video may actually have a mite problem, and one mite is shown toward the end of the video, but again, these are terrestrial snails and terrestrial animals that he shows with them.

I had a planaria infestation in several tanks and lost quite a few snails before I got it under control. I have seen planaria climb onto healthy snails that react by trying to close up, but the planaria can get between the snail's operculum (door) and shell. Planaria eat snail flesh and disable snails, eventually killing them, and I would guess that's what you have or had.
 

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Please reply on how I can kill off these tiny (Can barely see with eyesight, you need to flash a light in there) bugs. Even if you don't have time to read the full story below.

I have a five gallon fresh water tank, kept at 78 degrees, no filter. All i have in the tank is one black mystery snail. Boring, I know, but I wanted to keep the bioload to a minimum, and I love mystery snails. He's been happily growing and active for 4 months now. I change the water every week, 2 gallons each time. I feed him very little, only a crack off an algae wafer once a day, and I place it in the middle of the tank everytime, making sure it doesn't drift. I make sure to vacuum the middle/front very well every week.
I just tested for ammonia today (2 days after last water change) and it is absolutely at 0, this thing is as clear and light yellow as can be.

This last week I've noticed my snail slow/sluggish and not active much. Finally today, I noticed he didn't eat his tab from last night, and THATS a big no-no. I had a curiosity to flash a light on him (I don't have any light on the tank, just natural light as its near a window), and there they were. I can see these little bug like creatures in my tank, scurrying about. Very small, I didn't notice without the light. Eating his tab too.

I'm convinced they're bad, and that he's on the verge of dying. I've seen these tiny things before. A year ago I had a ten gallon fail, and they were in there too. Last week I stupidly dipped scissors in my 5gal to move a tab of food for my snail, and after I realized these scissors were the same ones I used on my plants for my failed 10gal. Could these bugs survive on the scissors even after at least 6 months of being dry on these scissors in storage? Whatever the case, these tiny bugs are back, and I want them dead. I'm pretty heart broken it looks like my snails going to die, hes not moving in a corner and not eating, please just tell me a way to rid these little bugs to give him some chance, or at least redemption.
... you just took a screenshot of pleasebe's dying snail..
 
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