Mystery snails are a welcome addition to a home aquarium. Colorful and community oriented, these crustaceans will even clean up after themselves and other tank mates.
Why You’ll Want to Add Mystery Snails to Your Aquarium
Mystery snails are a readily found crustacean among aquarium hobbyists. They are larger than average snails, and come in a multitude of colors such as ivory, yellow, brown, black, and even purple. In terms of size, a mystery snail will max out around the 2-inch diameter mark.
These slow moving guys are a peaceful addition to an aquarium, because they don’t attack, or cause any trouble with the fish or other creatures that may live with them. Mystery Snails also have the added benefit of eating some of the waste food and algae that are found in your fish tank. You’ll often find them suctioned onto the side of the aquarium as they slowly making their way around the tank.
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Mystery snails will live happily in just about any tank, but require enough room to move around. But keep a lid on it – these sneaky little fellows will try to make a break for it! They also require calcium for optimum health, and prefer harder water conditions. However, if kept in soft water, they can still be healthy as long as they’re provided with a calcium source, such as cuttle bone.
Mystery snails will gorge themselves on anything your fish left behind, but that doesn’t mean they don’t like food prepared especially for them. One dish that’s popular among keepers is “snello,” a meal that offers prime nutrition and is easy to make. Simply take a jar of baby food – vegetables such as peas or squash work well – and heat it in the microwave for a minute. Slowly stir in unflavored gelatin and pour into a container. You can add in some fish food at this time, folding it into the mix, but this is optional. Once this is done, simply place the container into the refrigerator and allow the mixture to set. Cut the solidified content into cubes and feed to your snails. If you don’t need it all, feel free to keep the leftovers refrigerated.
Breeding mystery snails is relatively a hands-off process. If you have two or more in an aquarium and they are kept in clean water and fed well, they will eventually attempt to breed. The key is to lower the water level of the tank 3 to 5 inches so that they can move out to lay their egg sac. Once laid, you’ll notice a small sac of eggs, light pink in color that sticks to the aquarium glass or rim of the aquarium. On average, it will take two to three weeks for the baby snails to emerge from their eggs, and they will fall into the water and start moving around.
Mystery snails are a great addition to any aquarium, whether it’s a beginner tank or someone who has been keeping fish for decades. They add color, movement, grace, and a sense of peacefulness to the tank, while helping keep waste to a minimum. These crustaceans are highly recommended for anyone with an aquarium, and are a great start in the world of breeding.
Must-Have Supplies for Mystery Snails
If you want to keep mystery snails in your aquarium, you’ll have to make sure you meet their needs for these colorful critters to thrive in your tank. Luckily, these crustaceans are not too demanding and are fairly easy to care for, which is why they’re often recommended to beginners. Still, there are a few things you have to do to make sure you’re offering the optimal environment for mystery snails. Of course, whether it’s offering the right diet or making sure that the water is up to standards, you’ll have to have the right supplies on hand. These are our choices for must-have supplies for mystery snails.
Invert Aquatics Micro Mix
Even though mystery snails will happily feast on your fish’s leftovers that doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t give them food designed specifically to meet their needs. This fortified highly-nutritious mix combines popular mystery snail foods into one blend: mini algae discs and deep dweller nutri-spheres. This fast-sinking formula is ideal for crustaceans as it contains all the minerals and vitamins they need – except calcium, so it’s advised to supplement it additionally.
Zoo Med Laboratories Nano Banquet Block Mini
These time release food blocks will keep your mystery snails fed and satiated. This food contains plankton and spirulina and it’s very attractive to snails as it sits on the bottom of the tank for days before it dissolves. This also makes a great vacation food option, as well as a cost-effective solution because these pellets go a long way.
Tetra Algae Wafers
When it comes to mystery snail food, you can’t go wrong with algae wafers. These sinking PlecoWafers are made from zucchini, algae meal and fiber so they offer complete nutrition to your snail, as well as a convenient form of snacking – they’ll quickly drop to the bottom of the tank and they are uniform in size, which is optimal for bottom feeders.
Weco Wonder Shell Natural Minerals
To make sure that your snail’s shell is healthy and tough, you will have to introduce a calcium supplement to the tank. This is a particularly convenient way to do it, as these molded scallop-shaped shells offer much-needed calcium to snails, but also make sure that the water in the tank is crystal clear and the pH balanced. This one little nifty addition to the tank will oxygenate, aerate and neutralize harmful acids- every aquarium would benefit from one, let alone those tanks that host mystery snails.
Hikari Crab Cuisine Rapidly Sinking Sticks
If you want food and supplements for your mystery snails all wrapped into one product, this is what you need. These fast-sinking sticks contain spirulina and chlorella among other beneficial ingredients, but most importantly they are enriched with calcium for stronger shells. These wafers won’t cloud your fish tank and have a flavor that’s naturally appealing to all crustaceans – what’s not to love about ‘em?
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Summer Davis is the mom of three kids, four dogs, and several tanks of fish. She boasts a passion for all animals, whether they are in the water or on land. This fish aficionado has kept many different species in her time, but holds a special place in her heart for wild and domestic bettas. When she's not talking about fish, Summer "spins" her extra time as the director of a baton twirling organization."
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