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FAQs about Nerites, Nerita, Neritid Snails

Related Articles: Gastropods, Sea Slugs, Mollusks, Abalone,

Related FAQs: Marine Snails 1, Marine Snails 2, Marine Snails 3, Marine Snails 4, Snail ID 1, Snail ID 2, Snail Behavior, Snail Selection, Snail Compatibility, Snail Systems, Snail Feeding, Snail Disease, Snail Reproduction, Mollusks, Sea Slugs, Abalone,


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Neritidae

Nerite snail breeding     1/13/13
Hello:
I was wondering if people ever breed Nerite snails? I have four in a 46 gallon. I heard that they breed in either brackish or saltwater. I have a ten gallon with nothing in it and I was wondering if it is possible to turn it into a place to breed Nerite snails if it were brackish or salt?? Thank you
<Nerite snails lay their eggs pretty much all the time. But as you say, the tricky bit is that the planktonic larvae that hatch drift downstream to the sea where they develop for a few weeks before turning into little baby snails that (amazingly!) crawl their way back inland. At least, that's the usual story. I'm not sure that scientists know how every freshwater Nerite breeds, and the idea the offspring go to the sea is based upon observations of a very few species. So it's aquarists like me extrapolating from a limited data set. Given how rare baby Nerites in fish tanks are, we can be fairly confident they don't breed in the same way as, say, Apple Snails, which have large fully-formed offspring that don't require any special care to survive. It's likely that no matter what, Nerite hatchlings are tiny and planktonic, and consequently would need an aquarium without a filter but with lots of green algae floating about in the water column. A quick Google with the terms "freshwater" "Nerite" and "reproduction" turned up an interesting thread on AppleSnail.net called "Olive Nerite breeding/veliger pics in freshwater" that may be of interest to you. But if this was me, I'd have a bunch of tanks on windowsills or under strong lights so they're full of algae-rich green water; I'd have groups of Nerites in each of them (they're aren't hermaphrodites so you need a male and female); and I'd run the tanks at a range of salinities from freshwater through to, say, SG 1.010 depending on the species being kept. I'd use nothing more than sponges for very gentle filtration. And then I'd experiment! Why the salinity? Because I suspect finding the hatchling snails and gradually acclimatising them to brackish conditions would be difficult. Cheers, Neale.>

White hemispheres on tank back 7/15/11
Do any of you wonderful people here have any idea what these might be?
<Eggs; likely gastropod/snail>
Several dozen of these little white hemispheres appeared on the back surface of my tank. They are about 3-4 mm across and almost perfectly round. Their appearance has roughly corresponded with the appearance of a dozen or so spirorbids on some live rock, which may or may not be a coincidence. Thanks!
Tim
<What species of snails do you have present? Any Neritids? Please read here: http://wetwebmedia.com/SnailEggIDF2.htm
Bob Fenner>

Re: White hemispheres on tank back 7/15/11
Bob - Thanks! You always come through. I checked the link you gave, and the Nerite snail egg pics there look exactly like what I've got. I do have a few Nerite snails, along with several Nassarius (my favorite!) as well as several Cerith and banded Trochus. In fact, at this very moment there is a Nerite snail on the back wall just a few inches from a patch of these eggs!
You folks are the best.
Tim
<Thank you Tim. BobF>

Identification Help, sans pic 3/16/2011
Dear WetWebMedia,
<Samantha>
I need your help identifying something in my saltwater aquarium. I've been seeing these puffy little oblong-shaped things in my aquarium for over a month now. They are white in color with a grayish/purplish tint. I thought it was just a few of them because they blended in with the LR, but upon closer inspection this afternoon, there's a TON of them! I guess they're multiplying...? I took a scalpel and tried to scrape one off the rock. It seemed soft, and when I tried to scrape it off the rock, I ripped it open and it looked like it released a bunch of little specks (spores, maybe?).
Do you know what they are, and are they harmful?
<Would be impossible to accurately ID your invaders without a pic. My best guess would be sponges or tunicates (Sea Squirts) which would not be harmful in your system.>
My aquarium is 50 gallons with a 20 gallon sump, and it has been set up for almost a year. My non-coral livestock consists of a yellow watchman goby, a splendid leopard wrasse, 2 naked clownfish, two sand-sifting starfish, a cleaner shrimp, two peppermint shrimp, 2 emerald crabs, scarlet hermits, blue-legged hermits, and Nassarius, Trochus, margarita, Nerite, and zebra turbo snails.
Thank you so much for your help,
<You're welcome. James (Salty Dog)>
~Samantha
Re Identification Help 3/16/2011 - 3/17/2011
Dear WetWebMedia,
<Samantha>
Thanks for your help. I've attached a picture to this e-mail of the "creatures" in the hope that you may be able to get a more exact ID.
<Difficult to see any detail as the pic pixelizes when blown up. I'm guessing a sponge or Ascidian of some type, likely the later. Bob may have a more accurate ID.><<Appear to be Nerite eggs... Do read here: http://wetwebmedia.com/SnailEggIDF2.htm and on WWM re the family (Neritidae). RMF>>
Thank you,
<You're welcome. James (Salty Dog)>
Samantha

Re Identification Help, Neritid snail eggs 3/16/2011 - 3/17/2011
<<Appear to be Nerite eggs... Do read here:
> http://wetwebmedia.com/SnailEggIDF2.htm and on WWM re the family
> (Neritidae). RMF>>
Thank you!
<You're welcome and will pass on to Bob. James (Salty Dog)>
Sincerely,
Samantha
Thank you, Bob
J

White Spots: Possible Nerite Egg Capsules -- 3/9/11
Hello,
<Hello there, Lynn here this evening.>
Our tank has been up and going for around 7 months. In the last 48 hours or less these white dots have appeared on my live rock. I have done several searches for them and asked the question on a couple of forums before bringing it to you guys. It started as 5 spots that I noticed on one rock. Last night I noticed a group of ten of them one the same rock. This afternoon I found say 50+ of them all over the tank. The tank is 180 gallon and I have these peppered all of the way across. I am at a total loss for what it might be. All of my water parameters are within normal limits. I enclosed a picture with some of the spots circled to help with the ID.
<By any chance do you keep Nerite snails? If so, then those are more than likely egg capsules. Nerites typically deposit loose groupings of oval to round, white to cream colored capsules on hard surfaces, and are often compared to sesame seeds. Each capsule contains a number of eggs that soon hatch into free-swimming larvae with, unfortunately, very little chance of survival. For more information and photos for comparison, please see the related FAQ's at this link: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/SnailEggIDF1.htm?h=
More info here: http://www.advancedaquarist.com/2003/9/inverts >
Again thanks again so much guys this will be a great help to us.
<You're very welcome! By the way, if you don't have any resident Nerites, let me/us know what other snails you do have and we'll take it from there. Also, if you could get a close-up shot of one of the spots, that would be great! Take care, Lynn Z>

turbo snail HHs -- 03/24/10
Hello from Portugal! I hope you can identify what is in my turbo snail.
The photo goes in attachment.
Best regards,
Pedro
<Mmm, can't quite make it/these out... Could be other snails/Gastropods... might be discrete bits/colonies of a sponge of some sort... there are even other possibilities. If they're not apparently harming the Turbo, I'd ignore/enjoy them. Bob Fenner>

Re: turbo snail 3/24/10
Hi Bob,
> Those do look like gastropod eggs to me, too. Bogwood in one of my tanks is covered with similar egg cases produced by the various Nerite snails (see attached). For some reason, the snails are picky, and only lay them on wood, not plastic or glass.
> Cheers, Neale
<Thank you for this. BobF>

Re: More: re: turbo snail 3/24/10
Hi!!!
That's what I thought in the first place, but since I only have got one Nerite I thought it was impossible for it to mate.
Thank you for everything,
Pedro
<Perhaps you have more than one Nerite hidden somewhere? Anyway, glad to have helped. Cheers, Neale.>

Comment on Re: More: re: turbo snail, Nerites don't need "two to tango" 3/26/10
Good afternoon!
<Hello Audrey,>
Just a quick comment about the answer to the following question Re: More: re: turbo snail 3/24/10 Nerites don't need to mate to lay eggs. One lonely Nerite will happily cover all suitable surfaces (wood, and occasionally other snails' shells) with eggs.
<Very interesting. My specimens do seem to be mating quite a lot of the time, but unlike the Clea helena or the Tylomelania, I never find any baby Nerites. That's a good thing or a bad thing, depending on your point of view, I suppose. It does make them a great choice for tanks where you don't want too many snails.>
They lay an incredible number of eggs each.
<Yes, they do!>
As usual, thank you so much for all your hard work,
Audrey
<Thanks for writing in! Cheers, Neale.>

Unknown Thing Growing on Glass: Snail Egg Capsule -- 3/14/10
Dear Crew,
<Hello Justin, Lynn here this evening.>
Can you guys help me out with what this is?
<Yes, it's a neat little egg capsule that looks very much like those left by Nerite snails. They're typically white (or whitish), oval to round in shape, around 3mm or so in length, and deposited either singly or in groupings on hard surfaces.>
They look like eggs of some sort, but I have never seen anything like it. They are quite small, a little larger than the end of a ball point pen.
<Since you said 'they', I'm guessing that you mean the individual eggs inside, not the capsule itself. If that's the case, then it's consistent with Nerite capsules/eggs.>
I tried my best with the macro lens, but this is the best I could get.
<You did very well, thank you! For more information/photo, please see the following link: http://www.advancedaquarist.com/issues/sept2003/invert.htm
By the way, if you do not have any Nerite snails in residence, do send along a list of what snails you have and we'll see if we can't figure out who the culprit is!>
Thanks all
<You're very welcome.>
Justin
<Take care, LynnZ>

Re: Unknown Thing Growing on Glass: Snail Egg Capsule, Nerite -- 3/14/10
Thanks LynnZ,
<It was a pleasure, Justin.>
Actually though the capsules themselves are only about the size of the end of a ballpoint pen.
<That's pretty small but not beyond the realm of possibility. The Nerite egg capsules commonly reported to us tend to be larger, but they can vary according to species. For example, Nerita tessellata (aka the Checkered Nerite) from Florida reportedly has capsules that are only about 1mm in length. Please see the following link for more information/comparison: http://www.sms.si.edu/irLspec/Nerita_tessel.htm >
I do have 3 Nerite snails left in the tank,
<I believe we have a winner!>
..some Trochus,
<It wouldn't be these snails. They're broadcast spawners. That is, they release gametes (eggs/sperm) directly into the water column (no egg capsules).>
..and I seem to have a breeding colony of Elephant snails as well
<I'm guessing you don't mean the giant African land snail (genus Achatina)! That's the problem with common names; they're common as opposed to specific. Sorry to give you a hard time but I just couldn't resist. I blame it on losing an hour of sleep last night to the Daylight Savings Time switch. I really need to move to Hawaii, where they don't mess with the time twice a year! Anyway, back on topic, the terms 'Elephant snail' and 'Elephant slug', are also used in reference to Scutus spp. snails (black, slug-like snails in the family Fissurellidae). If that's what you have, then we can rule them out as well. Like the Trochus snails mentioned above, they're spawners. See this link for more information/photos: http://www.seaslugforum.net/showall/scutus >
..(I say this because every few weeks it seems as if I find another small one (1/4" or so) crawling along the glass.
<Neat! Apparently, their survival rate in captivity is aided by the fact that they go through a non-feeding, planktonic, larval/'veliger' stage before metamorphosing into crawlers. Non-feeding veligers tend to have shorter planktonic stages than those that need to feed. The advantages are two-fold. First of all, less time in the water column equates to less chance of becoming food for fish, corals, etc., or perishing within/as a result of pumps, filters, etc.. Also, the fact that they don't need to feed gives them a distinct advantage over those that require specific planktonic foods (that may not be available in a captive system).>
It seems as I might have some pyramid snails attacking my other snails though, since they have these tiny white conical shaped snails hitching a ride, and starting to attach around the shell opening by the foot.
<Hmmm, are the snails long, slender, and mobile, or short/squat and sessile? If they're long, slender and mobile, you're right, they're most likely 'Pyrams' (family Pyramidellidae) and you'll need to get rid of them (see WWM re: methods). The fact that they're gathered around the foot/opening is typical of these pests. If the snails you're seeing are short, squat and sessile, they could be Hipponicids (aka 'Hoof snails'). These are roughly conical, Limpet-like snails that begin life as mobile crawlers, but eventually become sessile; attaching themselves to hard surfaces (including snail shells). Luckily, they don't actually prey on the snails they're attached to, but it's possible that as they increase in size, they could inhibit the snail's ability to move around and/or feed. Here's a link with some terrific photos for comparison: http://www.conchology.be/?t=65&family=HIPPONICIDAE
Hipponicid on a snail shell (see the FAQ titled 'Mollusk Identification - Hipponicids 06/20/08'): http://www.wetwebmedia.com/snailid16.htm >
What a pain it is to deal with that....darn pests!!
<Yes, indeed!>
Other than that, that would be it. Thanks again for the help, I appreciate it.
<You're very welcome, please let me/us know if there's anything else we can do for you.>
Justin
<Take care, LynnZ>

ID: Nerite Egg Capsules -- 3/26/09
Hello again.
<Hello Tammy, Lynn here this evening.>
I have an interesting growth that is on some of my live rock and one of my power jets. I tried to search the forums but I wasn't sure what to really search for. Can you help me from my picture?
<I sure can. What you're seeing is a grouping of Nerite egg capsules, possibly left by the nearby adult!>
The spots are not fuzzy... was hard to get a picture to come in clear. They are flat, smooth, white, and round, about the size of an eraser head.
<They actually look a bit like white sesame seeds, don't they? Please see the following links for more information:
http://www.advancedaquarist.com/issues/sept2003/invert.htm
http://www.wetwebmedia.com/MolluscPIX/Gastropods/Prosobranch%20PIX/Neritids/NeritesF1.htm >
Thanks.
Tammy
<You're very welcome. Take care, LynnZ>

Re: ID: Nerite Egg Capsules -- 3/27/09
Hi Lynn...
<Hi Tammy>
Thanks for the quick reply.
<You're very welcome.>
I did have one of my Nerites beside the eggs but it didn't register because I've never seen snail eggs quite like these.
<Yep, they have a distinct look about them, don't they?>
I thought I had some bad fungus starting or something so thanks for putting my mind at ease.
<I'm glad I could help. Believe me I've been in the same position a time or two as well, so I know how it feels. The good news is that the overwhelming majority of things that show up in our tanks are beneficial or at least innocuous. Thank goodness it's not the other way around!>
You helped me with my button polyps question with the white film. The white film subsided and they are doing fine so whatever it was, it went away.
<Yay!>
Thanks again and maybe I'll have babies but from what you sent me to read, probably not.
<Yep, that's unfortunately true. The young hatch into a free-swimming form that has a very low rate of survival due to predation, lack of appropriate foods/conditions, run-ins with equipment, etc. You never know, though -- some might get lucky and make it!>
Tammy
<Take care, LynnZ>

Nerites snails 9/1/03 Anthony...and all this time I have been feeding him bresaola and proscuitto! I knew I was doing something wrong. <heehee!> I am currently runny an AquaC Remora...and emptying it every day. <excellent.. although that still doesn't explain where the nutrient problem is. Perhaps poor water flow or distribution. Look for dead spots in the tank or flow under 10-20X which lead to accumulated matter which dissolves and feeds the algae that grows the snails> The snails don't really bother me that much... but there are a bunch of them. <limit their food source and you will limit their numbers> Would they have been a hitchhiker on the LR? Steve <oftentimes intertidal species and brought in with collected plants, algae, live sand, corals, live rock... even as larvae with water or on the shells/surface of other collected matter (like jellyfish medusae on Astraea snail shells). Anthony>

Nerites Snails in Canada? 11/13/07 Hi guys and girls, as always I really appreciate your work and help! <Good> Wondering if you know where I can find Nerites Snails (Freshwater or Saltwater) in Canada? I have tried to get some shipped from the United States, but they will not ship them up here anymore. My LFS have never even heard of them. I once got a shipment from Arizona Gardens, and they cleaned the algae on my glass like nothing else. Thanks so much for your help. Deryck <I saw them at the Big Al's locations in Toronto last year... Are there any locations near you: http://bigalscanada.com/storelocations/storemap.htm Bob Fenner>

Re: Nerites Snails in Canada? Converting FW to BR... not all 11/14/07 Thanks, they had closed down a while ago, but looks like they are reopening! I will give them a shot when they are open for business. <Okay> I still have a few freshwaters Nerites, I have researched and heard they may breed in brackish water. Think I can give it a shot to acclimate them to brackish? <Not if they're totally freshwater species. Please read here: http://www.google.com/search?q=freshwaters+Nerites&rls=com.microsoft:en-us:IE-Address&ie=UTF-8&oe=UTF-8&sourceid=ie7&rlz=1I7PCTA The first couple citations> Thanks again for your help. Deryck <Welcome. BobF>

What Are These Calcareous Discs On The Live Rock? ...Nerite Snail Egg Capsules 3/30/08 Hi Crew, <Hi Tom, Mich here.> Could you tell me what these small (1-2mm) gray/white discs are that are growing all over our live rock? <Yup.> They're flat, hard, round plates and can easily be popped off intact, not like the usual coralline algae I'm familiar with. <They are Nerite snail egg casings. You can read more about them here: http://www.advancedaquarist.com/issues/sept2003/invert.htm > The tank is about 130G and has been set up for 3+ years. Some of the rock has been in use 6+ years, some less than 2 years. We run a Chaeto fuge, calcium reactor, PhosBan reactor, EV180, 2x 250W Ushio 10K MH lamps (10hrs/day) w/T5 actinic/blue. Good circulation, over 4000GPH total from 2x SeaSwirls, 2x Koralia-type powerheads, and a chiller loop. We keep mostly SPS up high, a few small Euphyllids placed low, and a medium fish load. Water tests as follows: 80-81 deg F SPG 1.026 dKH 10.9 Ca 425 Mg 1320 NO2, NO3, NH3 are all consistently zero I scrubbed several rocks clean about 2 months ago but the discs are regrowing. Seems strange that they just started showing up about a year ago. They only grow on the live rock, while the walls and sides of the tank grow lots of pink, purple, and maroon coralline. I'd rather have the coralline cover the live rock...but mostly just these discs, alga, and a little Cyano seem to grow well on the rocks. <All very common.> Thanks, <Welcome! Mich> Tom

Re: What Are These Calcareous Discs On The Live Rock? ...Nerite Snail Egg -- 04/1/08 Capsules Thanks Mich, <Hi Tom> Let me provide a better description for you. I'm not sure these discs are egg casings, at least they're nothing like other snail eggs we've seen come and go. <No they are quite different than the gelatinous masses many other snails produce.> They look/feel like some kind of non-organic growth. <Yes, they feel very tough, almost calcium like.> They don't have the sesame seed shape of the Nerite egg capsules as described in the linked article. These discs are flatter, thin, and brittle...a tiny, plate-like, calcareous growth. Think of a miniature poker chip, but even thinner and with a sharp edge. They're evenly spread over all areas of the live rock...high, low, everywhere. They number in the thousands, not just tens or hundreds. <Yes. Your description/image appear to me to be consistent with Nerite eggs.> We have mostly Astraea, Nassarius, and Ceriths. We do have a few Nerites and Stomatellas that hitchhiked in, but not in large numbers. This morning I couldn't find any Nerites at all. Wish I could get a better picture for you. Do you still think these are produced by Nerites? <Cheers, Mich>

What Is This!?! Nerite Snail Egg Capsules 9/10/07 Ok.. I have a 90g tank.. and just moved across town.. and set up all my rock/sand/water in new 90g tank with built in overflow...well... needless to say the move made my tank angry. <I'm sorry your tank is upset.> and I am now getting over the wave of algae that happened.. but I am finding a large amount of rust colored flat worms <So long as they are not too big, they are generally beneficial detritivores.> (which I am taking care of) <???> and alot <This is not a word. Should be 'a lot'. I mention just for Bob, as it is one of his pet peeves'¦ Right RMF? ;) > of these white hard disks I don't know where they came from if they are related to the rust flatworms, or if they are a parasite or not.. take a look and let me know please. As I said they are hard, white and cannot be siphoned off of the rock. <These are completely harmless Nerite Snail egg capsules, nothing to worry about. You can read more about them here: http://www.advancedaquarist.com/issues/sept2003/invert.htm Hope your tank gets happier! Mich>

Unknown White Growths...Nerite Snail Eggs 5/15/07 Hello all... <Hi David, Mich with you tonight.> First I would like to mention that I love your site and I find a lot of much needed information on it that I use in the daily maintenance of my tanks. <Thank you for this fine compliment!> Now, to my problem/dilemma. Over the past two weeks I have been having a problem with ich and some other parasites attacking the swim bladder that caused me to lose 9 fish in 2 1/2 days <Yikes!!! I'm very sorry for you large loss.> (believe it or not, this is not my problem). <Ok, I'm a little scared now!> The other day when I woke up I went to look at my tank to see how the survivors are doing and much to my surprise all my live rock and even the snail shells were covered with these white growths (I've attached two pictures, one of the snail shell (IMG_0485) and one of a piece of my live rock(IMG_0504)). I've searched your website, along with some others, and I may be missing something or using the wrong keyword but I cannot find anything that resembles or sounds like this outbreak. I'm guessing that it has nothing to do with the ich and other parasites that have taken over my tank but I would like to know what these unknown growths are and how to treat them. <Seems like you have some frisky Nerite snails in you tank. These would be Nerite snail eggs, they generally don't mature in captivity and there is nothing to treat here. A photo here: http://www.wildsingapore.com/chekjawa/largfoto/r422fx.htm > I took one of the snail shells to my LFS and after careful examination the owner determined that it looked like this growth feeds off of calcium. He came to this conclusion by taking a razor blade to the growth and removing it. When it came off the shell was all soft and a few layers could easily be scraped off. When you took the razor blade to other parts of the shell where no growths were, the shell was hard, as it should be. Could this be clam or mussel larvae? When I got home I was looking around my tank and found a snail that had a growth (looks like a shell) on it. I've attached that picture as well (IMG_0512). I'm sorry about that picture but it was as close as I could get to the turbo snail using my digital camera and lens. Do you have any suggestions as to what this problem could be? <This is not a problem or anything to be concerned about. You will likely see these "sesame seed" like eggs wax and wane in your system.> If so, how do I treat it because my 125 gallon is stocked full of these white growths. Thank you for your time and continued knowledge. <Welcome! My pleasure to assist.> <G'night! Mich>

Snail Id 1/16/06 Hi, My reef tank is recently having a population explosion of these guys. They are about 1-2mm across. Can you help me to id them? Are they sun dials? <Mmm, can't tell if this is a neritid, turbinid or torched from the one pic (need to show obverse, the other side, as well)... but if all stay small as you state, I would guess the first family. Bob Fenner> Chee Thong

What Are These Calcareous Discs On The Live Rock? ...Nerite Snail Egg Capsules 3/30/08 Hi Crew, <Hi Tom, Mich here.> Could you tell me what these small (1-2mm) gray/white discs are that are growing all over our live rock? <Yup.> They're flat, hard, round plates and can easily be popped off intact, not like the usual coralline algae I'm familiar with. <They are Nerite snail egg casings. You can read more about them here: http://www.advancedaquarist.com/issues/sept2003/invert.htm > The tank is about 130G and has been set up for 3+ years. Some of the rock has been in use 6+ years, some less than 2 years. We run a Chaeto fuge, calcium reactor, PhosBan reactor, EV180, 2x 250W Ushio 10K MH lamps (10hrs/day) w/T5 actinic/blue. Good circulation, over 4000GPH total from 2x SeaSwirls, 2x Koralia-type powerheads, and a chiller loop. We keep mostly SPS up high, a few small Euphyllids placed low, and a medium fish load. Water tests as follows: 80-81 deg F SPG 1.026 dKH 10.9 Ca 425 Mg 1320 NO2, NO3, NH3 are all consistently zero I scrubbed several rocks clean about 2 months ago but the discs are regrowing. Seems strange that they just started showing up about a year ago. They only grow on the live rock, while the walls and sides of the tank grow lots of pink, purple, and maroon coralline. I'd rather have the coralline cover the live rock...but mostly just these discs, alga, and a little Cyano seem to grow well on the rocks. <All very common.> Tom

Snail ID Nerites 11/14/03 howdy guys, <howdy> think you could help me out with this one? found a bunch (3 or 4) of these little snails hitchhiking on a nice bunch of star polyps I just placed in my tank. they appear to be nocturnal. <pretty harmless likely... appear to be Nerites> I first though that they might be Heliacus, but after looking it up (in your book I might add) they are the wrong shape and do not have a cone shaped door. <hmmm... the cone shaped door can be scary. Do watch closely> are they good guys or bad guys? <likely safe... but look out> <Anthony>

Orange Mitra Snail 3/28/04 Hey, I was at my LFS and had asked for some Nerita lineata snails, where they suggested that I should get an "orange Mitra Snail" because it was good for digging through DSB's. <more below on the "Mitra snail"... but first let me say that I agree with you. Do pursue the Nerites or small Strombus or Stomatellids instead as much more useful and safer gastropods for this intended purpose> That was their answer to not have any serpents or black brittle stars for eating detritus and poop. The snails are $10.50, and I don't know anything about them, so I didn't get any. <very wise move> But I haven't been able to find anything about them on the web, except for shell collectors. I am not going to buy a snail (or anything) for my tank if I don't know how to support it or its compatibility. So what can you tell me about it? <I cannot say for certain without a scientific name to be sure we are talking about the same animal. Our crew here and our friends/queries like yours are spread all around the world. Common names like "orange Mitra" mean little to nothing at times. I reckon yours is either and Acmaea limpet species (in which case it is not reef safe, like most limpets... in this case eating at least your desirable coralline algae)... or the snail is of the genus Mitra, in which case is not an algae eater a'tall and is of dubious omni-carnivorous nature. I'd avoid both> I have also been unable to sustain the life of any brittle stars, but my tests read fine, and no copper contamination. <there are several sea salts out there that have received some notoriety/legend unexplained (may simply be QC if even true) regarding the stunning/killing of starfish and snails for example. By chance, are you using Crystal Sea salt?> I will check the faq's before I ask anything specific. Thanks, Ben <for what its worth... I strongly favor the long-standing quality and reputation of Tropic Marin or Instant Ocean. Anthony>

Orange Mitra Snail II 3/28/04 thanks, as for the Mitra snail, its appearance suggests that it would be within the genus Mitra by comparison to the images found by the shell merchants (but no resemblance to Rhona Mitra, from Tomb Raider and "the practice). <ha! too bad> However, I will avoid it per your advice. <a safer way, yes> as for the salt. I had initially setup with IO 18 months ago, but thought I got a 'good deal' on a 200gl bucket of Red Sea, which plagued me with Cyano and moss smothering everything. <some salts do seem to have issues with quality control. Public opinion from actual/practical applications is outspoken in some cases> My city is surrounded by farming and we have a high amount of Phosphates in the water which certainly doesn't help. <do consider a de-ionizer when you can... I like Kati/Ani brand (Drs Foster and Smith)> Recently I moved (within the city) and have gone back to IO, as I have finally used up most of the Red Sea. <good to hear IMO> At the time of my starfish demise, there was probably a 50/50 ratio of salt types, not including what would have absorbed into the substrate and rock. <best of luck, my friend. Anthony>

Sudden Nerites Death Syndrome - 4/15/03 Hello WWM crew. <(2010 HAL voice) Good morning Dave. Ha! I always wanted to say that! Just like HAL......Gosh, I am a nerd. Anyway, I'll just say my name is Bob Fenner.....not Paul Mansur Hehehheeee> Before I go any further, I'd like to thank you for the excellent job you guys do....this website has proven to be an invaluable resource for me. <Glad to hear it. That is why we do what we do. Thank you for validating us> Now onto my question. I have a couple of Nerites snails, and they appear to be dying slowly, and I'm completely stumped on this one. I also have a couple keyhole limpets and a bumblebee snail (which are doing fine, I might add), so I really am quite unsure of what could be causing this. My tank param.s are as follows-am-0, nitrite-0, nitrate-<10ppm, KH-9, CA-380. <Calcium and KH are a little low. Not enough to kill them though. Sounds like they could be starving or already sick. Do you quarantine?> As soon as I put them in the tank, they choose a spot on the wall of the tank and stay there, never moving at all, and eventually die. Absence of food is no issue, as there are small amounts of filamentous algae for them to graze on, <Hmmmmmm> so I really see no reason for this. <Nor do I if food is not the most obvious issue here. Not totally sure though> Is there something that Nerites, and snails in general, are sensitive to? <Well, pretty much the same things that other snails, limpets and many invertebrates would be sensitive to. Hard to say what the problem is here but the limpet and the other snails would tip you off if something were severely chemically wrong.> I know they are intolerant of high nitrate levels, <To a degree> but that is about all I know when it comes to these tank janitors. <Well, food issues aside (try adding Nori), medications, chemicals, various predatory animals, parasitic disease, or just plain highly stressed animals are killers.> Hmmmm.... If you could provide any insight here I would really appreciate it! Oh, btw, the only additions to the tank as far as supplements are concerned are Kent essential elements and C-balance. <Well. insight.... hmmmm.....could be any number of the above I mentioned. Too hard to tell. How long has the tank been set up? I have had some Nerites live for a short time in the beginning months of my setup, but now almost two years later I have had three Nerites in my tank for 5 months no problems. Try adding a sheet of Nori or some type of sheet algae and see what that does, but nothing stands out really. So many possibilities. One piece of insight might be to steer clear of Nerites and try some other algae cleaner like an Astrea, Trochus, margarita. That is about all I can come up with. So sorry for the lack of a definitive answer. Try the various reef site forums as well. Many knowledgeable snail keepers out there> Thanks again, and kudos on the AWESOME website. <Thank you very much. Paul> -Dave Conners

Olive Nerites Snails sold to go in garden ponds [Neritina reclivata] Hi, I recently purchased three olive Nerites snails online as the seller said that they are good in freshwater aquariums and are also good for "cleaning" the algae in ponds. I have an outdoor pond but bring my fish in for the winter. I treat my fishes holding tank just like a pond, same water, same filter, etc. I bought these snails strictly for the tank. So, when these snails were delivered, they gave me five instead of three. After being placed in the tank, they opened up almost right away and scattered. Now, it has been about 24 hours and they are not moving much at all. <they may have been recently collected/imported from an estuary... little or poor acclimation to freshwater perhaps> So as I search on the Internet, the only info that I have really found is that they are brackish water snails. <true> My question is, are they ok for this type of set up that I have, or am I doing them harm? Thanks so much Ashlee <some aquarists claim to have success with these snails in FW... but they are truly brackish. Take one specimen out and remove it to another vessel, bucket or aquarium and salt the water very slightly and slowly over some days to see if you get a positive response. This Nereid snail does naturally invade freshwaters in Florida. Still... it would not be my first choice for algae control in the FW pond or aquarium with so many other proper FW species available. Best regards, Anthony>

Nerites Hey Bob, I figured that you'd be the person to ask about contacts for getting a collection of a variety of marine Nerites. We're doing a project to look at the taxonomy of the marine Nerites and trying to get as many of the species as possible. We're having trouble locating people who can supply us with a few animals from different areas around the world. Do you have any suggestions for who to contact in regards to buying about a half dozen to 10 (preferably live, but EtOH preserved would be OK) snails of every damn species of Nerites in the world ;) Thanks a million! Rob >> <Hmm, think I do have just the person to contact (next)... Marty Beals of Tideline (Los Angeles), he and his partner Dennis Mok mainly deal in skeletons... but do have the most, best contacts for opisthobranchs, live or no. 310-641-9106, fax 649-1131 And you're welcome to say I referred you; these are old friends... Hey, not that old! Bob Fenner

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