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FAQs about Marine Snails 2

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Related FAQs: Marine Snails 1Marine Snails 3Marine Snails 4, Marine Snails 5, Snail ID 1, Snail ID 2, Snail Behavior, Snail Selection, Snail Compatibility, Snail Systems, Snail Feeding, Snail Disease, Snail Reproduction, MollusksSea SlugsAbalone

Cyphoma gibbosum in the Caribbean

White spots on snail shells I searched your site (which is wonderful!) and haven't found any information about white spots appearing on snail and hermit crab shells. Any ideas?  <likely a settled spawn of sessile snails or micro fanworms. Common and harmless... do browse here: http://www.tcnj.edu/~maughme2/faq.htm> When we got the critters, there were no spots on them. They started appearing about a week later. They are proliferating now. Some shells have three or more perfect circular white spots.  <sounds like a worm with a small calcareous tube> The tank was started almost three weeks ago with some live rock, a deep sand bed, and microorganisms (from GARF). Added the critters after one week when the rust brown algae (diatoms?) started appearing (and is now flourishing!). Water chemistry tests 0 for ammonia, nitrites, and 10ppm for nitrates. Ph is at 8, temp at 80 degrees. Added Caulerpa (sp?) last week in the refugium. Nitrates are going down slowly. You probably need more information but I'll let you ask because otherwise I could type a novel. :) Tricia <no worries... do browse the above link looking for a familiar face. Anthony>

Photos of Bubble Shell Mollusk Hi Bob This it the best picture I can get with a digital camera of this Bubble Shell Mollusk at this time.. I hope it is of some help figuring out what this creature is. So far it has not attacked anything that I can see. Another local aquarium has had them in the past and says the found them harmless.  <alas... many such gastropods seem well behaved for weeks or months before attacking another desirable tank mate. Such gastropods are decidedly opportunistic as a rule. I do not recognize this species from the picture but it has the shape and form of the many omnivorous or even carnivorous species. Any doubt? Put some meaty food by it (shrimp, krill, clam)... if the "snail" is attracted to it, then you at least have an omnivore that needs to be watched carefully. Form follows function and a snail that eats minced clam from the grocery store will not pass up an opportunity to eat and expensive Tridacna clam!> However I nearly lost it, when it crawled into a powerhead opening overnight.  <good heavens... the intake are unguarded? Do keep a PVC tee, bio ball or cage on the intakes to protect your animals without fear of the guard clogging easily or becoming biological> I managed to free it minimal damage to the mollusk. But today I lost a Bicolour Dwarf Angel ( its gut was swollen, but colour was fine, breathing was heavy). Can these mollusks release toxins if harmed.  <many do under duress> I noticed it has released some kind of frilled organ from its side (a little visible in one picture)..  <yes... a "mantle"... common on numerous gastropods that are similar to yours> to be safe I have done a 60% water change, though all water requirements where fine.  <very wise... do add fresh carbon too> A Moorish Idol and Sailfin Tang have been slightly off their food since this morning, though not showing any other signs of distress. Hope you can help out with advice on this matter.  <feed that Moorish idol frequently (3-5 small feedings daily) if you want to have a chance to enjoy it for many years> Again sorry for the poor picture quality. <no worries> Yours Sincerely Brett Brisbane, Australia <best regards, Anthony Calfo>

Response to odd white pattern on live rock Hello Crew; <<And hello to you. JasonC here at your service...>> This is not a question, but another confirmation on a previous post in marine snails 2. <<Fair enough.>> The title of the post was "odd white pattern on live rock" I have the same pattern...white squiggly lines that under magnification, look like they are made up of tiny bubbles. The only difference...mine are on the glass inside the tank. I have 10 Cerith snails that hang out on the glass a lot and I noticed the snails producing these lines. I suspect that they are Cerith snail eggs, just as SushiGirl suggested.
<<And that is the most likely explanation. Cerith snails are known to lay their eggs in geometric patterns.>> Thanks for your time; Kevin <<Cheers, J -- >>

Unidentified creature Good morning guys, Thank to some good advice from you guys and a lot of planning, the reef tank I started up in May is powering. Full of healthy fish and corals. The other day, I noticed a clump of weed moving and on closer inspection it turned out to be an animal. I cannot find an ID for this thing anywhere on your pages or in my books. I attached a photo for your reference. It is green, with small white "branches" off it's body, looks a lot like a snail with no shell, has a mouth which feeds on the algae and moves reasonably fast when it wants to. It also seems to have a siphon of sorts on the "lower" portion of its body. Many thanks, Michael Peters <a view of the head/mouthparts would help more... but it seems to be a shell-less gastropod of some kind. Perhaps a Sea Hare. There are many kinds. Rather like a big beefy Nudibranch. Best regards, Anthony>

Strange Beasties and New Book Pre-Order UK Hi Watery Ones! Hope you are all well. <how'd you know I've been holding my beer in? <smile>> It's been about 8 weeks since my last question - weaning myself off gradually. I apologize in advance, this is one of those "what is that strange critter" questions - sorry! <no worries at all... but do look here for future reference:  http://www.reefs.org/hhfaq/index.html and here: http://www.rshimek.com/odd_critters.htm> On the glass of our marine reef tank there are several white, ammonite type things. They don't appear to be moving and are hard (e.g., I have tried scraping them off and it is very difficult). They vary in size too. Any ideas as to what they might be? (Bet you love those sorts of questions!) <they are surely Vermetid snails (sessile... never move) or Serpulid worms> Should I just leave them be? <harmless and a very nice sign of tank maturity> Secondly, we occasionally hear a clicking noise coming from our tank; sometimes a single click and other times two or three clicks one after the other. My husband reckons it's a pistol shrimp but I thought they made really loud noises and this noise isn't really obtrusive. Again, any ideas? <pistil shrimp most likely... possible a mantis. Likely harmless either way. Do keep and eye open or trap with food at night to see,,, just some of the many fascinating critters from live rock :)> Thanks guys! <my pleasure!> [PS how do I go about getting a signed copy of your new book, being all the way over here in the UK?] Lesley <Thanks kindly for the interest... in just a few weeks we'll have the links up on my site www.ReadingTrees.com and here www.wetwebmedia.com for pre-ordering. It will be a pleasure to mail you one to the UK just the same. When the forms are up, please e-mail again when you are ready and we'll quote an accurate price for the extra freight (just a few dollars more). With kind regards, Anthony>

Tulip snails A have a medium sized Tulip Snail. I'm trying to determine whether this snail is aggressive.  <they are very predatory on other mollusks. Just like most whelks and conch snails> I lost a small Abalone and I suspect this snail is responsible. Is this possible. <almost assured> Thanks for any advice. Don Tope <Anthony>

Flamingo Tongue Cowry Sorry to bother you but I have another question regarding Flamingo Tongue Snails. My supplier tells me they eat only Gorgonia and I have some in my tank.  <that is correct... and they should never be imported for this reason. Unless you have developed a technique for growing their prey gorgonians species faster that they can eat it> However, after introducing six snails and the Gorgonia all of the snails promptly wandered off the Gorgonia and seem to be grazing contentedly on algae and other food sources in the tank.  <they are definitely starving to death. This is an age old observation and problem. Just because a snail, fish, etc is eating an alternate food in captivity doesn't mean it is surviving on it. They are dying of a dietary deficiency. It may take weeks... some even hang in for months... but slow starvation is inevitable here. I am honestly deeply saddened that yet more have been imported. Were these sent along as freebies with an order of livestock from an Atlantic supplier or were they ordered deliberately?> The question is, are they going to survive or am I just being fooled and they will soon starve to death. <the latter... this has been observed by aquarists for 30 years!!!> They seem to be OK without the Gorgonia. <based on what, my friend? We cannot see that they are gaining or losing mass/muscle tissue so to speak. By virtue of the fact that they are still moving? :)> Thanks for the help. Don Tope <best regards, Anthony>

Re: Flamingo Tongue cowries Thanks for the response. I was aware of the possibilities you mention in your response but wanted to confirm my suspicions. I did not think that the mere fact of movement was proof of a satisfactory situation for the organisms, hence my query.  <understood and agreed my friend> I, like you, do not wish to waste life and that is why I asked the questions I did. Would you suggest that I keep using Gorgonia (I can try to keep it - Can obtain more if necessary).  <hmmm.. at this point it gets a bit discriminating. Some personal decisions here. We are discussing the aquarium display of one not-easily-renewable resource (captively) with another (the slow growing gorgonians). If you were studying the mollusks with a purpose (scientific report, breeding study/programs, etc) I'd feel comfortable with using the gorgonians as fodder. For a merely aesthetic display, however... I'd cut your losses early. No more snails or gorgonians. The problem is compounded by the fact that these cowries eat an aposymbiotic gorgonian that is very difficult to keep alive in captivity. And other hardy gorgonians are not eaten/accepted readily. Alas, neither the host or parasite belong in captivity with most aquarists.> Again, I do not want to waste Gorgonia if it is a virtual certainty that it cannot be kept alive and as a replenishing food source for the snails. Thanks for your attention. <exactly... with kind regards, Anthony> Don Tope

Reply about snail problems Hi guys, just replying to Anthony about a prior discussion. Anthony, it took me some time but I ran the test as you suggested. The snails in the water change water are fine, they were immediately active, while the snails in the tank did the usual fall over to the side. I also bought two red leg hermits for the test, with the results the same. I took the snails and hermits out of the tank and put them in the water test batch with a piece of live rock and they are moving about and appear fine. I have also bought a Salifert magnesium test kit. The results were 1410. This is in the range of seawater I think. Do you think it could be a contaminate or something like low oxygen saturation?  <much more likely a contaminant... not O2 level at all likely although that is easy enough to test for. Some rocks have embedded deposits in them... who knows, perhaps a piece of you "live rock" is an encrusted iron relic from a Spanish Galleon! Heehee... do use a Polyfilter or two to absorb and possibly indicate (color change) contaminants> I have a lot of water movement about twenty five times the tank volume per hour. I took off a second light which had some rust on it. Could this be the source of the problem?  <unlikely enough of a problem for hardy crabs. Any of the rock ever been through a copper treatment before?> On a side note I was going to coat the bottom edge of the light with a latex coating used for grip on tool handles, any thoughts?  <seems like a good idea once cured> Thanks for your help, Lowe <best regards, Anthony> Lowe Winfield Runkle II

Re: Snail problems Anthony, thanks for the reply. I use reef crystals salt which I think is made by IO.  <Ahh...yes, a very fine salt and not the brand that I suspected as problematic> I run Polyfilter in the return flow from the skimmer as well.  <excellent, but still a stumper about the snails!> Should I add some magnesium supplement or do they make a test kit? <not necessary, my friend. Especially with regular water changes. May I suggest that you run a test with a new batch of seawater (mixed and aerated for days) with a single snail inside of it to try to determine if the problem is in the tank or with the source water. Yes... lets try to reduce some variables now. Best regards, Anthony>

Snail & Hermit Crab waste Hi Bob: My tank finally cycled with a lot of algae bloom. Two days ago I added 10 Scarlet Reef Hermits 10 Turbo/Margarita Snails and 30 Red Leg/Left-Handed Hermits from FFExpress. They have done an excellent job cleaning but I noticed a lot of waste since I added them in the tank. Is this bad for the tank? And should I pull out some of the hermit crabs out? <You neglect to mention how large your tank is. I would not use anymore than 1 hermit crab per 10 gallons. I use about 1 snail per 2-4 gallons depending on the tank, lights, etc.> Thank You, Aram <You are welcome. -Steven Pro>

Re: Snail & Hermit Crab waste Hi Steve: I have a 54 gallon corner tank. I guess I should pull out some of the crabs and snails. What do you think? <Yes, I would remove all but two of each hermit crab. I would leave all the snails and if you need more algae eaters, get ten more Astrea, Cerith, or Nerites snails. I like to use a variety of snails as they all seem to prefer to eat different things. -Steven Pro>

Re: Snail & Hermit Crab wasteThanks Steve, FFExpress should redo their Web Site about adding the correct amount of Invertebrates. ~Aram <Nothing in particular about FFExpress, but all of these places are in the business of selling. I never assume any salesperson, selling anything, knows everything about their product or wants to be my friend. Pet stores are all businesses, too. Just approach them as you should any business, as an educated consumer. -Steven Pro>

Snail Deaths II I'm sure that they are turban snails because the LFS has Astrea snails as well (look like little pyramids and much smaller if I recall). <Yes, a good description. Astrea are about dime size, Turban about quarter.> Do you think I should try another few snails or a shrimp in a few weeks and see what happens? <I would like to know what is causing your snails to die first.> Also thinking about putting a PolyFilter just to see what comes up - or do you think that it's unnecessary? <No, sounds like a good idea, my next suggestion.> I checked all water parameters again (using all new test kits (Tetra), all same except the Nitrate readings indicate 12.5 mg/L vs. ppm) this afternoon. I now have an extra set of test kits, but still no snails. Still confused. <See what the Polyfilter reveals and give us an update. -Steven Pro>

Silly questions cant find on FAQ (Caulerpa, Dehumidifier H2O, Cleaning Tanks, Amphibious Snails...) hey there I have some basic silly questions, oh gods of the captive sea. <if we get to be deities... I want to be Bacchus> 1. can I use water from my basement dehumidifier as replacement water or is my well water fine. <possibly neither... dehumidifier water has been used by aquarists before, but that doesn't make it right or safe. Just take the sheer number of hot dogs consumed by people as an alleged food, as casein point. The water produced is condensed on metal parts. No best or guarantees as to what that can or may impart into the water. Furthermore, the standing water collected in the reservoir as demineralized water is definitely going to absorb impurities from the air as it sits (all water especially soft will). Well water can be quite variable seasonally and is influenced by many factors... depth, local run off, etc. Even when good, it is generally not consistent enough to use unless you have it analyzed quarterly to monitor trends. My advice is to buy a deionizer with good prefilters and recondition the purified water made to suit the species you keep> 2. I bought a used 39 tall tank, it has wormy, hard crusted white stuck-on old tiny worm tubes. what's that about???? are they bad? I have his live sand and live rock in quarantine. tiny calcified tubes and all. <they are either Serpulid worms (kind of like miniature feather dusters) or they are sessile snail... both harmless, even desirable filter feeders. Enjoy> 3. my mom brought me some small snails from the Fla. gulf. they are always out of the tank, on the canopy, up the wires, several feet from the tank. waiting for high tide? what are they and should I get rid of them, the kids have a blast finding them every day. beneficial or not.?? also in another quarantine tank...have 3 now after my loss of 22 clowns to ich.  <I have absolutely no idea... many species this could be. And it really underscores the importance of not taking animals from the wild or buying from a store without knowing if you can meet their needs in captivity. I certainly understand that mum brought the snails back with the best intentions, but they are still living creatures that may end up dying or being killed prematurely> 4. ma also brought to NJ for me fresh live sand and fresh live gravel from the gulf...one day fresh...any good for my tanks. in quarantine tank 3 now. <likely fine and helpful> 5. my Caulerpa is making tank water yellow, how do I fix and prevent. grape mostly. <heehee... just one of the many reasons why I dislike Caulerpa in mixed garden reef displays. But.. to answer your question, small frequent changes of carbon (critical for quality light getting to live rock, anemones, coral, etc). For example, 2 oz of carbon replaced weekly is much better than 8 oz replaced monthly?> 6. how do I crop it back. pinch the WHAT?? in your FAQ, I don't get it. <best to pull up whole and continuous fronds (strands) rather than pinch, cut or crop along a perimeter. Pinching or cutting fronds causes a sort of sapping that can stress/kill an entire colony and forcibly send the mass into a "meltdown" releasing all of the garbage it took up in growth plus its own natural noxious compounds. Sometimes such events can even wipe a tank out. I am personally adamant that Caulerpa needs VERY close attention in mixed reef displays (I like it much better in a dedicated marine "plant" tank).> thank you again most timely gods Renee <quite welcome... my work is done: now time to go find some ambrosia and nectar (AKA beer and pretzels). Anthony>

Mysterious Life form Hi, I've been searching the FAQ's on WetWebMedia and Flying Fish Express looking for info on a small creature that I saw today moving around on the glass of my 20 gal mini reef. It's a translucent creamy color, oval shaped and about 1/4 inch wide. It's flat and moves in a most interesting manner. Looking at it straight on it looks like the foot of a snail, but without the shell. Any idea what it may be and if it may be a problem for my aquarium. <Could be a shell-less snail. By that I do not mean a snail that lost its shell, but there are several mollusks that never developed shells. I would describe them as resembling a garden slug. Take a look at the Marine Hitchhiker/Critter ID page, http://www.tcnj.edu/~maughme2/faq.htm#snail, and see if you cannot positively identify you animal. Probably no harm to your tank.> Thanks in advance for any advice that you can give. ~Steve <You are welcome. -Steven Pro>

Snails? Hello I've had a 58g tank for some 9 months now.. the first three months it was setup in Atlanta GA, then I moved the entire tank to Oklahoma city, OK (1200 mile move, everything survived). Inhabitants are: white ribbon eel, brown scopas tang, 2 peppermint shrimp 1 coral banded shrimp, 1 derasa clam, 20 or so mixed snails (slowly dying to the crab population it seems), scarlet reef hermits, blue leg hermits, etc total about maybe 25.. my question is.. do snails breed in captivity? <Yes, some much more so than others> in one corner of my tank, which entails 3 sides of the glass, there are tiny calcareous looking spirals that have been getting larger.. at first I scraped them off with a scraper, but I've noticed they're all over the rock in that corner.. and now some have grown to where I can see a moving head pop out of the end of the spiral. should I do anything to encourage their growth? <Mmm, these are actually likely tubiculous (tube building/dwelling) Polychaete worms (like Featherdusters...). Might be encrusting snails, even egg cases from your more mobile gastropods though... Best to just leave them be... not be over-zealous re clean-up.> will this overload my system, as there are probably 500 some odd snails in the system? <Not likely. If you have so many, you could maybe sell them to a local shop!> thanks in advance as always :) bill Hammond <You're welcome. Bob Fenner>

Snail Quarantine? You guys are the best. Thanks so much for all your information. A couple questions... I've read conflicting info about whether or not to quarantine snails prior to adding them to a tank. We want to get about a half dozen turbo snails from our LFS who has them in established reef tanks. Is a quarantine or some sort of dip necessary before placing them in our FOWLR tank? <Ideally, yes quarantine. Also a good idea to not put outside water (from the LFS) into your tanks.> Also, how concerned should I be about the copper pipes in our house? <Minimal for most.> Will R/O remove any copper that may leach into the water? <Yes with many other things.> Thanks again. Karen  <You are welcome. -Steven Pro>

Pyramidellid & Coral Eating Snails??? Hi guys, I was wondering if you could confirm two snail ID's for me. Recently I discovered several 1/4" long snails in my tank that resemble the description of coral eating snails (whelks).  <the second photo is a whelk or like mollusk... probably omnivorous, may be predatory...likely harmless but I would still remit it to the sump or refugium without corals> Also, I've just noticed a population explosion of A LOT of tiny snails which I fear may be Pyramidellids.  <the tiny black "snails" in the first photo are Cerith and are HIGHLY desirable detritivores! They breed easily and scavenge well. Please do share them with other aquarists and spread the love around> If they are indeed Pyramidellids, is the 6-line wrasse the only fish that is known to eat them, <nope... many/most wrasses in that genus will eat them... some other fishes too, but not always reef safe. Even a six-line is no guarantee. Giant clams need to be inspected regularly and Pyrams harvested manually (4-6 times yearly)> or would they serve as food for a mandarin as well?  <mandarin won't touch them... feeds on copepods and fine plankton> I would much prefer adding a mandarin then a 6-line. I've attached some pics to help in the ID. Thanks for all the help. <best regards, Anthony> More Pyramidellid & Coral Eating Snails? Thanks for quick reply Anthony. <Steven Pro here is afternoon.> Are Ceriths and Pyramidellids one and the same? <No> I've always heard that Ceriths are good and Pyramidellids are bad. <Correct> Are they just considered bad for clam keepers? <Ceriths are good for everybody. Pyramidellids are clam parasites (bad) and die without a clam host.> I don't have any clams at this time, and probably won't for a while (inadequate lighting and don't plan on upgrading soon). Again, good morning to ya and thanks for the quick help. <Have a nice day. -Steven Pro>

Snails without shells? Hello Crew. I have been curing some FIJI live rock in glass tank in my family room. Lo and behold I think I have seen two differing snails but they seem not to have the usual shells. In fact, they seem not to have any shells at all. Are my eyes deceiving me? <Could be... but there are numerous animals of this description> Also, one of them seemed to be 'sneezing' this morning. It was squiring short jets of what appeared to be micro sized bubbles held together in material that is the same color as the water. Are these hitch hikers alright and do they add to the biodiversity of my tank or should they be ruthlessly rooted out? <The former. No worries. Enjoy. Bob Fenner> Thanks for all you do. Cheers, Fred.

Snails (marine, health) Hello: I have a 30 gallon reef tank, 3 months old, with RUGF, Fluval 204, and a Remora skimmer, and 96w CF 50/50. The tank is occupied by 25 lbs. live rock, 2 Percula clowns, a Cardinalfish, scooter blenny, horseshoe crab, and 5 Turbo snails, as well as 3 smallish bubble-tip anemones (came with live rock and thriving), some mushroom corals, yellow and red polyps, leather coral, and a frogspawn. <A lot of life for such a small volume for sure> Everything is well, water parameters are constantly 1.023 SG, 76 degrees, 8.3 pH, <2.5 ppm NO3, < 0.4 PO4, no NH3 or NO2, and I change 5 gallons every 2 weeks. Additives include Kent dKH, liquid Ca, Tech I, and CoralVite. All of my creatures seem happy but for one strange thing. Two of my snails seem to temporarily "lose their grip." This has happened to them separately on 3 occasions. When it does, I find them upside down on the substrate, squirming around, unable to grab onto glass or rock. I have righted them before, and they seem to fall over again soon thereafter. The last time it happened, I just left the snail alone and by the next day he was crawling around normally again. Is this a sign of a problem, or is it normal? <Does sound like a problem. You mention adding alkalinity and biomineral supplements. I would be testing for anything/all that you amend... I strongly suspect that either hardness or calcium is badly out of whack here (your snails more so than the other life listed need both). Please read over the numerous FAQs files posted on www.WetWebMedia.com re marine water chemistry. Bob Fenner> Ed Marshall, Austin, TX

Re: Snails Thanks for the response. I should have mentioned that my Ca level is about 400-450 and alkalinity is within normal ranges (unfortunately, my alkalinity test kit only reports low, normal, and high - I am about to replace it). I have read that frogspawns are an excellent water quality indicator, and this coral seems extremely happy. <Depends on what is being "tested", but in general, yes.> My coralline algae is spreading on the glass and lift tubes as well. Unfortunately, my initial research into the hobby did not convince me that 30 gallons was too small. I am now convinced otherwise, and I am planning a 75 gallon setup that I will move everything to within a few months. Is it OK to cycle the new tank with substrate/biomedia from the old one and move everything at once, or should I move things gradually? <Should be fine to make the switch all in one go> If so, should I move corals and live rock first? Or fish? <Move the gravel, LR, old water first... next the livestock...> By the way, I asked at my LFS and they said the snail thing is normal! <Bizarre... what is "normal" about the snails falling off onto their backs? Does this make sense? I mean, what sort of survival value might this behavior represent?> Thanks again for your time and wisdom - Ed Marshall <And you for your involvement, sharing. Bob Fenner>

Snails (marine, loss, HP04) Hello: I have a 30 gallon reef tank, 3 months old, with RUGF, Fluval 204, and a Remora skimmer, and 96w CF 50/50. The tank is occupied by 25 lbs. live rock, 2 Percula clowns, a Cardinalfish, scooter blenny, horseshoe crab, and 5 Turbo snails, as well as 3 smallish bubble-tip anemones (came with live rock and thriving), some mushroom corals, yellow and red polyps, leather coral, and a frogspawn.  <A lot of life for such a small volume for sure> Everything is well, water parameters are constantly 1.023 SG, 76 degrees, 8.3 pH, <2.5 ppm NO3, < 0.4 PO4, no NH3 or NO2, and I change 5 gallons every 2 weeks. Additives include Kent dKH, liquid Ca, Tech I, and CoralVite. All of my creatures seem happy but for one strange thing. Two of my snails seem to temporarily "lose their grip." This has happened to them separately on 3 occasions. When it does, I find them upside down on the substrate, squirming around, unable to grab onto glass or rock. I have righted them before, and they seem to fall over again soon thereafter. The last time it happened, I just left the snail alone and by the next day he was crawling around normally again. Is this a sign of a problem, or is it normal? <Does sound like a problem. You mention adding alkalinity and biomineral supplements. I would be testing for anything/all that you amend... I strongly suspect that either hardness or calcium is badly out of whack here (your snails more so than the other life listed need both). Please read over the numerous FAQs files posted on www.WetWebMedia.com re marine water chemistry. Bob Fenner> Ed Marshall, Austin, TX

Do Snails Get Ick? <<JasonC here...>> well that's good , that snails and hermits don't get ich , that way I can have a bunch of them , <<what's a bunch?>> you said starfish don't' get it either right?? <<I did say that, didn't I>> you see I am wanting to save my fish and I have had people to tell me if I just leave the ich in there I can have starfish and snails and hermits, but some say it kills everything including live rock <<I think perhaps those who are telling you "it" kills live rock mean this: some of the items one might use to treat Ick [copper, etc.] are pretty close to poison, and often invertebrates [snails, Seastars, etc.] suffer 100% mortality when you pour this in your tank. If will kill the stuff that makes live rock live. That being said, Ick - the parasite Cryptocaryon - will NOT by itself kill live rock, but you can by trying to treat it.>> thanks for your help , do you have a messenger <<Uhh, not sure I'm hip to this "messenger". Cheers, J -- >>

Can I have a Tank Full of Snails? have I made you mad ? <<mad? not in the slightest... what gave you this impression?>> it says on the computer that in a 55 gallon aquarium you should have about 2 hermit crabs per gallon and I have a 55 so that would be a little over 100 I am stupid when it comes to math in my head lol, and they say about 1 snail per gallon , of course if that was the only thing I had I would have to feed them , some of my crabs kill each other :( <<they do this... not a big fan of ratios like 2 crabs per gallon, doesn't always work out, like you say 110 crabs in a 55 is a lot of crabs, and they would end up eating each other, and you've already been down that road. Cheers, J -- >>

Possible snail outbreak I have a 55 gal. reef tank. I have a lot of very small white round curled up things growing on the sides of the glass. I noticed a couple of small snails growing on the rocks. I'm wondering if this could be a snail outbreak. If it is what should I do? <Please read through the non-vertebrate articles and FAQs sections on WetWebMedia.com Bob Fenner>

Question re Conch snails Hi, I am trying to find out if a crown conch will eat a feather duster? Thank you. <long story short... yes, quite possible. Even likely in some cases. Conch snails in general are voracious omnivores... and some are outright impressive predators, decimating worm and mollusk (even other "snails"). There are very few herbivorous exceptions to this general rule (like the queen conch). Conch are too large and or disruptive for invertebrate aquaria in my opinion across the board. Not recommended for reef aquaria but can be great for fish only. Anthony Calfo>

Odd white pattern on live rock Dear folks, <Howdy> Thanks in advance for your time. I was just looking at my tank and noticed an odd pattern in two locations on my live rock. It is white and looks like it is made up of mini bubbles or something. It is very squiggly and the pattern is extraordinary regular. Without a digital camera, I am forced to send a poor computer drawing. I know that my drawing stinks, but really, the design is like this only each loop is exactly the same and very close together but not touching. I thought it might have come from the margarita snails ( I have 3) But I am not sure. I also have a bunch of Cerith snails, 2 clowns and a few hermit crabs. Thanks, Steve <Drawing looks fine, and I do agree with your suspicion. This is likely a "snail trail". Nothing to be concerned about... as the system goes/grows, other organisms will come into being, preponderance that the snails don't denude. Bob Fenner>

Not a Question Actually, this isn't a question...on the Snails FAQ 2, the question titled Odd white pattern on live rock -- those are Cerith snail eggs. I have pics of one in the process of laying eggs if you'd like a copy... <Thanks much for this. Will amend (my evil ways, no, actually just this label) on the morrow> SushiGirl  <Ooh, and I like that name. Bob Fenner>

Snails and Crabs die! Dear Bob: I'm forwarding this question to you, hoping you can help out this army guy! Howard. <Okay. Oh, see Steve answered. Bob F.> <Steven Pro this afternoon. I have a few suggestions. Yes, there are commercially available copper test kits, but your fish would be affected to high levels of copper too. Any detectable level of nitrite is bad and needs to be addressed. I would also look at his acclimation procedure. Many people kill a lot of inverts by exposing them to large shifts in salinity. Float the bag for 10 minutes, add one cup of water, float for 10 minutes, add one cup of water, etc. until temperature and salinity match. -Steven Pro>

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