One day you look at your aquarium and you notice a tiny snail in the tank. It looks harmless. A week later the snail has half a dozen of fellow companions and, before you know it, the aquarium is full of them. Where did they come from? How were they able to reproduce so quickly? What can be done to get rid of them? Those who have ever tried to get rid of snails know that it’s a hard battle, but there are certain things you can do to maintain the aquarium and keep it free from snails.
When you bought the aquarium, there were no snails inside, so where they actually came from? Snails usually arrive at the aquarium attached to plants in the form of small eggs that we often overlook and don’t remove when the plants were washed (it could also be gravel, stones or roots).
Sometimes, they come together with fish. It takes one snail or just a few snail eggs and your beautiful aquarium becomes a snail oasis.
Perhaps one of the most amazing things about snails is that they reproduce so quickly. A snail doesn’t need to mate to multiply as it can fertilize its eggs itself. Moreover, during the day snails usually hide in the gravel and only come out at night to feed on plants, so you can assume that the individual that you see stuck to the aquarium glass, has dozens or hundreds of brothers, living somewhere underground. Each of them are able to reproduce rapidly so your snail problem can grow really fast.
Although snails reproduce fast and spend days in their hiding places, you can still win the battle.
Try luring them outside with the lettuce leaf that you stick to the aquarium glass for night and in the morning you will probably find the whole snail family feeding on the lettuce. Of course, you won’t eliminate every snail using this very method, but at least you can control their population.
Another solution is to place snail-eating fish in the aquarium. Any fish belonging to the loach family will be eager to dine on snails. Also, labyrinth fish such as Gourami or Fighting Fish are likely to eat snails, although they are not much experienced in searching for food under the gravel, which is snails’ most favorite hiding place.
Finally, you can also lessen the amount of food you give to the fish. If you reduce the amount of food given to fish, snails also eat less. As a result, they will not be able to reproduce at such a quick pace.