Ground snails in the aquarium


Melania - bottom sanitary and aquarium balance indicator

Melania snail is a small, inconspicuous mollusk living in the aquarium soil. It is rarely started specially, usually it “starts” itself, getting into a room pond with the plants brought from the pet store. And thanks to the extraordinary vitality it feels great in almost any conditions. These residents do not harm the aquarium, there is even a certain benefit from them. But they are so hardy and breed so fast that, if allowed, they can turn an aquarium into a real sniper.

Origin and appearance

Melania is a gastropod mollusk of the genus Melanoides of the Thiaridae family. The outdated name of the species is tiara, as it is mentioned in the aquarium literature of the past. Today, this name is outdated and incorrect, because, due to new scientific research, the place of melania in the classification of mollusks has changed. In everyday life, these snails are also called unpaved.

Adult snails do not grow more than 3 cm. Juveniles are so small that they can not be seen without a magnifying glass. This species can be easily distinguished by a sharp shell, having the shape of a narrow, elongated cone (this form is most convenient for digging into the ground). Color low-key, ranging from dark grayish to yellowish-green with darker longitudinal uneven stripes.

Today, a slightly larger and more attractive appearance of these mollusks, Melanoides granifera, has appeared in the aquarium. The granifer has a more dome-shaped sink and is colored in brown tones. For the rest of the characteristics it is exactly the same soil snail.

The area of ​​distribution in nature of mollusks is very wide: they live in Asia, Africa, Australia. Recently found populations of melania in the south of the USA and Europe.

Melania Granifer

Peculiarities of the species, behavioral characteristics

The snail melania lives in the ground, especially feeling comfortable in the river sand when the diameter of the grains of sand does not exceed 4 mm. Mollusks do not harm plant roots. They spend the entire period of lighting the aquarium in the ground, crawling to the surface for food (organic residues, rotting plants, fallen grains of fish food) in the dark. Because of this feature, it is often impossible to find out about their appearance in the aquarium until the population size becomes so large that the melannies begin to move to other surfaces: decorations, leaves of plants. Melania is quite thermophilic: the temperature comfortable for them starts from 22 degrees.

By their way of life, small inhabitants of the bottom benefit: they loosen the soil, mixing it, preventing it from souring. However, with a large amount of them in the soil, too much organic matter is formed - waste.

Melania breathes with its gills like fish, which means that, unlike other snails, it is important for it the amount of oxygen dissolved in water. With a lack of O2 mollusks crawl out of the ground in large quantities, serving as a kind of indicator of the problem. "Crawled out" mollusks in the daytime is also a sign that the balance of the aquarium is disturbed, water and soil are polluted, and there are many dangerous chemical compounds in them.

It is believed that these snails are useful in that their diet includes lower algae and they “clean” the glass and plants from green deposits. However, their role in this is so small that it is hardly worth writing down the properties of cleaners in useful qualities.

Melania viviparous, this means that they produce into the world already completely viable, fully formed young. Under favorable conditions, the reproduction of these mollusks goes exponentially.

Ways to combat excessive amount of snails

These aquarium snails do not carry any decorative value, and the benefits of their stay in the aquarium do not outweigh the unpresentable view of the indoor pond hung with milianiyami. Therefore, it is worth getting rid of multiplied snails.

A big mistake would be to use a chemical method of cleaning an aquarium from excess mollusks. Do not forget that melania live in the ground, and deciding to get rid of them in this way, you will turn the bottom of the aquarium into a snail cemetery, triggering a bacteriological explosion.

The most effective method to control the number of melania is mechanical cleaning. Of course, from the soil in the aquarium so easy to extract, but knowing the habits of these mollusks, they can be easily lured to the surface. Leave a leaf of lettuce, pieces of boiled vegetables, a banana peel overnight at the bottom of the aquarium, and in the morning, before turning on the light, remove them - the bait will be hung with snails.

Melania can be flushed down the drain, but most likely they can crawl out. It is better to put a bag of clams in the refrigerator.

The natural way to control their numbers is predatory snail Helena. A few of these striped yellow-black snails are able to successfully contain the growth of the population of ground clams. The chain catfish leporacanthus, which is the natural enemy of the soil snails, will also help. In order for his struggle with them to be successful, the fish must be kept hungry.

It is not possible to completely get rid of melania without restarting the aquarium. However, it is not worth doing this, because with proper control, this mollusk is a successful member of the aquarium community, which has a beneficial effect on the balance within a small bio-system.

Snails melania

Not so long ago, almost no one considered snails as pets (even if as an inhabitant of an aquarium), however, over time, this phenomenon has become increasingly popular. One of the most common types of snails intended for keeping in an aquarium is the snail Melania.. Snails of this species are groundwater, and in nature they live mainly in sand and silt at the bottom of freshwater bodies of water. If we consider Melanias as animals living in an aquarium, then they have their advantages and disadvantages. Speaking of positive qualities, it can be noted that the snails eat various waste floating in the water and agitate the soil, which prevents it from souring. That's just they multiply at a breakneck pace, because of what they risk becoming a real plague for the aquarium.

What are these snails

It is quite easy to recognize Melania: they are small (on average, the size reaches about 3 cm), their shell resembles an elongated cone in shape. The number of shell curls is usually 5-7. Color mainly light brown, but there are both light, almost white color and dark brown, with an abundance of spots. On two tentacles, located on the head of the mollusk, are the eyes. As for breeding, Melania aquarium snails are viviparous.

How to contain

As to the conditions of detention, in this matter the snail Melania is unpretentious to the conditions of detention. This species can even exist in lightly salty water or hard water. At the same time, due to its features, it is extremely necessary to have at least 4-5 mm of soil. The temperature in the aquarium should be maintained in the range of 17-27 degrees, and the water should be sufficiently saturated with oxygen (breathing in these snails by using the gills). Melania loosens the soil and eats algae and the remains of fish feed, which provides a certain microflora in the aquarium. But its excess amount leads to the fact that the bottom of the aquarium begins to "move", which does not look too aesthetically pleasing. By the way, by the behavior of the snails, you can determine the state of the water and the soil: if the soil is rotten, then the snails tend to get out of it and sit on the walls.

What to feed

There are no special food for snails Melania, and there is no need for this: they feed on what remains in the aquarium from the rest of the inhabitants. They also like to eat pieces of seaweed. But if it became necessary to feed the snails separately, then you can give them the following vegetables in a slightly cooked way:

  • cucumbers;
  • zucchini;
  • cabbage - white or Peking.

By the way, in this way they can be caught if the number of individuals has become too large: the snails will “run together” to feed, and it will be easier to catch them.

How to get rid of too multiplied snails

As already mentioned, Melanias multiply rapidly and intensively, and therefore there may be situations when it is necessary to get rid of mollusks that have multiplied too much. In addition to catching bait, when a piece of food suitable for snails is thrown into the water - cabbage leaves, banana or cucumber skins, there are several ways to eliminate the excess snails. We list them below.

  • The use of chemicals. Perhaps the worst of the options, because such funds can adversely affect the fish living in the aquarium.
  • The introduction of predator fish eating snails. This may be catfish or, for example, a clown fish.
  • Use of predatory snails. Carnivorous snails will do an excellent job with the overgrown Melanie population, but it is worth remembering that they tend to multiply, even if not so quickly.

In conclusion, it should be said that despite some shortcomings, Melania's snails are very useful aquarium inhabitants. And they are very funny.

Melanie snails content breeding compatibility photo description.

Origin and appearance

Melania is a gastropod mollusk of the genus Melanoides of the Thiaridae family. The outdated name of the species is tiara, as it is mentioned in the aquarium literature of the past. Today, this name is outdated and incorrect, because, due to new scientific research, the place of melania in the classification of mollusks has changed. In everyday life, these snails are also called unpaved.

Adult snails do not grow more than 3 cm. Juveniles are so small that they can not be seen without a magnifying glass. This species can be easily distinguished by a sharp shell, having the shape of a narrow, elongated cone (this form is most convenient for digging into the ground). Color low-key, ranging from dark grayish to yellowish-green with darker longitudinal uneven stripes.

Today, a slightly larger and more attractive appearance of these mollusks, Melanoides granifera, has appeared in the aquarium. The granifer has a more dome-shaped sink and is colored in brown tones. For the rest of the characteristics it is exactly the same soil snail.

The area of ​​distribution in nature of mollusks is very wide: they live in Asia, Africa, Australia. Recently found populations of melania in the south of the USA and Europe.

Varieties of Melanoides

In many publications on aquarism, you can read that there are one type of grinding - Melanoides tuberculata, the shell size reaches 3-3.5 cm in length. In fact, there are at least two more species of melania snails:

  • Melanoides granifera is from Malaysia;
  • Melanoides riqueti from Singapore ponds.

All three varieties of this freshwater mollusk known today are endowed with a conical shell, the mouth of which at the critical moment is easily covered with a lime door.

Due to this, the microclimate favorable for the cochlea remains inside the shell, although it should be noted that the melania is very hardy - they do not care for either the critical temperature of the water or its high salinity.

External differences are more pronounced in Melanoides tuberculata and Melanoides granifera. This mainly concerns their color:

Melanoides tuberculata gray, combined with olive and green. Contrasting to the whole shell of the mollusk, its mouth looks like, its spirals are more saturated in color - they can have brown, sometimes even burgundy shades.

Melanoides granifera superior to their specific counterparts in external attractiveness. Contrasting in a peculiar combination of shades of gray, brown color favorably distinguish them from other varieties.

Having a large diameter of the shell, these snails prefer sand for living (it is easier to move on it) or they do without soil at all, often attaching to stones, to the banks of the reservoir.

General conditions of detention

  • Temperature parameters 22ºС - 28ºС. Regarding the stiffness and parameters of the acid, you can not worry at all, since the cochlea do not react to these indicators at all. These picky aquarium individuals can live in salted water, the only thing that does not like mollusks, is very cold water.
  • But it is worth thinking about aeration, as this aquarium species of mollusks breathes its gills.
  • But the most mandatory in the content of these individuals is a quality soil. The ideal option is a sandy bottom or fine gravel soil. However, it is worth noting that snails can live for a long time without soil.
  • Decorations of their water space, melania do not attach importance, but like to hide not only in the soil, but also under the stones or decorative grottoes. And any vegetation will serve not only as a place for shelter, but also as a good way for frequent snacking.

How to keep aquarium grinding?

It seems that the creation of special conditions for living snails in domestic water no one thinks. Moreover, this mollusk is very unpretentious and easily adapts to a variety of circumstances.

For example, being from freshwater bodies of water, Melanoides tuberculata demonstrates a wide tolerance to the level of salinity of water - there are known habitats of melania in lakes with salinity up to 30%.

Under the conditions of a home aquarium, the snail calmly refers to any temperature regime, but the optimum range for it is 20-28 ° C.

Such parameters of water as acidity and hardness are even less significant for this representative of gastropods.

But the soil for grinding - an essential element. Its quality is also very significant. It should be either coarse sand or soil of 3-4 mm grain (snails should be able to move easily, and such soil stays clean longer).

To ensure reproduction of mollusks, a pair is needed - a male and a female. Melania are opposite-sex.

If in the reservoir of such pairs are 2-3, then in a couple of months the population will be calculated in dozens, since the speed of their reproduction is extremely high.

The younger generation of snails is not growing soon, adding 5-6 mm in length each month.

Based on the above, it can be seen that Melanoides tuberculata is a more useful inhabitant of a domestic pond. And these qualities of the mollusk suit you and whether it is worth letting it into the aquarium is up to you.

Features of melania

The mollusk Melanoides tuberculata is an unusual representative of gastropods, it differs from other similar inhabitants of the aquarium at once by several characteristics.

The first. Melanoides tuberculata is known as a soil snail because its habitat in an artificial reservoir is an aquarium soil. It happens that melania creep out onto the walls of a domestic pond or decor objects, but this is not of a mass character. Separate individuals usually undertake similar raids at night.

The second. Melania is important the presence in water of dissolved oxygen, because it breathes through the gills.

Third. Melanoides tuberculata is a viviparous snail that does not spawn, but produces offspring that is fully capable of independent existence.


In order to create ideal living conditions for mollusks, you should not take care of special food for them, since snails eat absolutely everything. They do not disdain with small scraps inherited from other aquarian inhabitants, and with pleasure they eat soft algae, thereby not only have a light snack, but also keep the pond clean.

But if you want to feed your pets, they should throw a special pill with water, which is used for somobraznyh. You can and give balanshirovannye vegetables, such as cabbage, zucchini or cucumber.


To breed snails, you do not need to plant them in a separate aquarium or create special conditions. Since the aquarium mollusk breeds with lightning speed. To do this, it is enough to settle several individuals of this species in the reservoir so that in a couple of months the number of individuals will increase several dozen times.

It should be recalled that the snail belongs to the viviparous individuals that bear the egg, and after a while small individuals of this species appear from it. The number of small melanias depends primarily on the size of the cochlea itself, and can be approximately from 10 to 50 pieces.

How to get rid

In the case when the mollusks are completely flooded with the entire aquarium and are rather tired of their owner, you can get rid of them using several simple methods. First of all, it should be remembered that snails absorb oxygen, and without it, they begin to develop weakly and die after some time.

But this method can destroy other inhabitants of the aquarium. Therefore, you can use another method, throwing some vegetables at night into the pond. The very next morning the whole zucchini will be in melania. You can also use special preparations that are served in the pet store.






How to destroy the snails in the aquarium?

Aquarium snails are beautiful, useful and for the most part do not harm other inhabitants. However, there are times when they breed so abundantly that they begin to annoy the aquarist. This is especially true of soil snails, such as melania.Getting rid of them completely is not very easy, and in the article we will look at the main ways to cope with an excess amount of snails.

A variety of aquarium snails

Snails are gastropods, part of the genus Mollusca, which also includes mussels and mollusks, a feature is a single shell. They move on the surface with one big and muscular leg, eating food in a small mouth. A pair of sensitive tentacles out of the head and on them are located the eyes with which snails explore the world. They have lungs that they breathe on the surface, gills for breathing underwater, or both.

Most of the snails are hermaphroditic, that is, they have both male and female genitals immediately. In most cases, pairing requires a pair, which is to lay eggs, in a mucous protective film, in the aquarium it can often be seen under the leaves of plants. Ampulyaria lay a large number of eggs above the surface of the water, the clutch looks like yellow or orange eggs in a dense, tough pile. Some snails, such as aquarium melania - viviparous. Aquarium snails are omnivores, they can eat algae, food debris, carrion, rotting plant parts. Some large snails can damage tender plants, but contrary to popular belief, small snails do not damage them.

Snails in aquarium

The controlled population of snails does not harm the aquarium, on the contrary, the snails eat the remains of food, clean them of algae, and the ground snails mix and aerate the soil, preventing it from rotting. Many contain interesting snails - ampoules, which are not very demanding and not prone to rapid reproduction. However, small snails, such as fizy and coils tend to multiply rapidly in favorable conditions, and quickly fill the aquarium, covering the glass, filters, plants.

How to avoid snails in the aquarium

Usually, snails enter a new aquarium in the form of caviar or adults, which are transferred along with the plants, decor, or when transplanting fish. Check all plants for snails or their calves, or dip plants in a solution that kills them (Hydra-Tox), even the most attentive aquarists live snails. For a balanced aquarium snails do not pose a threat. Instead of struggling with their penetration into the aquarium, it is better to monitor their number, rapid reproduction means any problems in the aquarium.

Growing snail population in an aquarium

The main reason for the excess number of snails in the aquarium is the abundant feeding of fish. Snails devour food debris and multiply in a square progression. If snails began to disturb you, or rather their number in the aquarium, check if you are overfeeding fish?

Usually the waste accumulates in the ground and serves as a warehouse for snails, so the second task is to siphon the soil and remove the remnants of food. Also, the snails devour algae, and if you do not have antsistrus or similar catfish, you should add them to the jar, creating food competition. In addition, catfish devour the eggs of snails.

Do snails suffer diseases?

Snails are involved in the transmission of diseases among fish populations, as they can be used as carriers for parasites and pathogens. However, you should not worry too much, nevertheless, when buying new types of fish or feeding them with live food, the chance to bring the disease is several times higher.

Fighting snails with chemical methods

New preparations for dealing with snails can be bought in pet stores and online stores, but still they should be used only as a last resort, as it has a lot of side effects. The main problem is that when it works, the massive death of snails will break balance in the aquarium.

Death will cause a bacterial outbreak, changes in water parameters and fish disease. Moreover, chemistry will not kill all the snails, and their eggs, and they will continue to multiply by eating the remnants of their relatives. Carefully read the instructions, some drugs are toxic to fish and shrimp, also avoid using other chemicals for the aquarium, it can reduce effectiveness.

The natural method - snail traps
Snail traps are now produced by many brands, but it’s quite difficult to buy them from us. Easier to do it yourself. The most elementary snail trap - leave a sheet of scalded cabbage at night on the bottom of the aquarium, putting it on the plate. In the morning it will be covered with snails, which are easy to remove. By doing this regularly, you will significantly reduce the population.

If fish, for example, somas do not allow to do so, then you can modernize the method. We take a plastic bottle, close it, burn holes in the bottom, or pierce holes so that the fish cannot get in and the snails easily. Inside we put either lettuce, or cabbage, or other vegetables, better scalded, so they will work more efficiently. Flood the bottle and leave. In the morning you will receive a full bottle of snails.

The natural method is fish
Some fish in nature eat snails, and you can use them to fight. However, if your fish is full enough, it is unlikely to pay attention to them. Keep them slightly hungry. An excellent snail eater is a tetradon, but it has a bad temper and is not suitable for general aquariums. Of the less aggressive - fighting clown, macropod, some types of gourami. Also, all kinds of catfish, eating the eggs of snails. To help the catfish in the fight, turn over the decor, snags, pots, etc., as caviar is most often laid under it.

Natural method - predatory snails
Predatory snails Helena (Antentome helena), carnivores and eat other species of snails. In recent years, they have become quite popular and buy them no problem. These are beautiful, cone-shaped snails, which also look attractive. Grow up to 1.-2 cm. Helena can significantly reduce the number of snails and even completely destroy them, if this happens, they begin to eat like all snails, although such a diet is not typical for them. Although helens do not breed as fast as normal snails, they can give birth to offspring. But the snail is quite expensive, and if it happens at a loss you will not.

Snail myths

Snails pollute the aquarium
On the contrary, aquarium snails eat waste, clean the surface, destroy algae. This myth is most likely to come from the fact that snails thrive in neglected aquariums with abundant feeding and poor maintenance.

Snails can kill small fish
Snails are omnivores and will eat anything they can reach. When the fish dies or is already very weakened, the snails immediately gather for a feast. The aquarist sees that the fish is lying at the bottom and snails are eating it, but they are not to blame for its death. A little thought is easy to understand - a slow-moving snail can pose no danger to healthy and frisky fish.

Snails spoil the plants
Some snails, especially from nature and local water bodies can damage plants. But the bulk of the aquarium snails do not harm the plants in any way. Snails have a small mouth adapted for scraping from surfaces, and higher plants have a hard surface. The origin of the myth is easy to understand - the snails are constantly eating old, dying leaves and it seems that they killed them.

Simple rules:

  • 1. Do not overfeed
  • 2. Clean the soil regularly.
  • 3. Get catfish or shrimp so they eat the same algae
  • 4. Get some snail fish
  • 5. Turn the snags and decor
  • 6. Use snail traps
  • 7. Check out new plants and decor for caviar and snails.
  • 8. Never use plants or decor from local ponds.
  • 9. Do not feed a couple of days of fish, they will be more likely to eat snails
  • 10. Watch out for water if using chemicals.

How many snails live in an aquarium

Almost no home aquarium can do without snails. They have long ceased to be exotic in it and have become a familiar design element, and some of them are quite a pretty and interesting element. In addition, they are useful: they are engaged in regular cleaning of their reservoir, destruction of fish waste and eating rotten parts of plants.

To settle a particular snail in your tank, it is important to know not only the peculiarities of caring for it, but also the approximate duration of its life, as well as the factors that may affect it. Let's find out how much the most common types of snails live in a home aquarium.

How long does an ampullia live in an aquarium?

This large tropical snail is a favorite of many breeders, as it perfectly cleans the aquarium from mucus and other contaminants, but it is absolutely safe for fish and plants.

Life expectancy (as compared with other species) is average in ampulyaria and directly depends on the conditions of detention. For example:

  • If a stable temperature of 23–25 degrees is maintained in the aquarium and all optimal conditions of maintenance have been created, the snails live for about 3 years.
  • If the aquarium is warm-water and the temperature in it is from 25 degrees and above, then the life of the snails is reduced to 1 year, or even less. The reason - the accelerated metabolism, due to which all processes in the body of the cochlea go faster.
  • If the aquarium is cool and the temperature is below 23 degrees, the snails live a maximum of 4 years.
Also in the literature there is an opinion that if, in addition to the pasture, in addition to giving specialized ampouleries, they will live much longer and their life will be more active.

How many lives Achatina

This snail lives not in an aquarium, but in a terrarium. However, these creatures very often start at home, and therefore it is worth telling about them. In Achatina are valued large size and mind. It is also believed that they have a positive effect on the human nervous system, providing a calming effect.

On average, Achatina live in captivity for about 5 years. There are cases of longevity, when pets pleased their owners for 10 years.

How much such snail will live depends directly on the conditions in which it will be:

  • properly selected volume of terrarium, soil, temperature (25-28) and humidity,
  • and nutrition will significantly prolong the life of your pet.

How many lives a fiz in an aquarium

These snails once came to us from Asia and North America. Their appearance can not be called bright. They are small, not more than 2 cm in length, brownish.

In the aquarium can get quite by accident, often entered with the coils. They multiply very quickly, and getting rid of them is a whole problem, even though they love to feast on fish.

Physiuses also became famous for the fact that young individuals can make and stretch between the algae threads of mucus that persist for up to 20 days and along which snails climb like ropes to the surface of the water for atmospheric air. Fizy live in the aquarium just 11-14 months.

How many lives the coil in the aquarium

These are freshwater mollusks. In aquariums, you can most often see brown and red coils. They are being brought in not at all in order to amaze others, as they look rather inconspicuous (a sink about 36 mm in diameter and a wide leg), but in order to give a natural pond to a domestic pond.

They are interesting because they can crawl not only on hard surfaces, but also on the surface of the water, turning down the sink. Coils live in the aquarium from 2 to 4 years, but they manage to give life to several generations of snails.

How long does a tiger snail live in an aquarium

This is a freshwater "guest" from South Africa. Named for appearance: on a light brown shell strips like a tiger.

Prefers hard water, does not eat plants, and loves lower algae. These are very good sweepers, but prone to "escaping" from the aquarium, so the lid is required!

Tiger snails live on average 3-4 years.

How long does a snail live in an aquarium?

These are small freshwater mollusks living in the ground. In nature, they can be found in various places: Africa, Australia, Asia.

They live in almost all freshwater aquariums, where they are sometimes not even noticed. Often get there by chance, with a bottom or fish.

Their sizes are small, only 3-4 centimeters, and the color can be yellow or dark gray. But their appearance is not the main thing. They are amazing because they are viviparous, breathe with the help of gills and are nocturnal. The average lifespan of these amazing creatures is 2.5-3.5 years.

As you can see, the snails in the aquarium live not so long. Depending on the type, this period ranges from about 1 to 4 years. However, a caring owner can extend it to the maximum, creating the most comfortable conditions for life for his snails.

aquarium. soil snail melania