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Beginners Guide

TOP 9+ Helpful Snails For Your Next Freshwater Aquarium

by Nguyễn Hoàng Anh Tuấn 07 Apr 2023 0 Comments

Snails are detritivores that help clean and break down organic matter in the tank, such as fish leftovers, leaves, algae, and even dead animals. Most snails are safe with aquatic plants, fish, and shrimp in your tank. To help you see these fantastic creatures' value, we've compiled a list of the top 9+ freshwater snail species we love to keep. 

Snails need minerals like calcium to develop their shells. They prefer a pH above 7.0 and a higher GH level above 8 degrees (140 ppm).

Most snails are very salt sensitive, so remove them from the tank before treating the water with sodium chloride. Usually, snails will lie still when they are resting, but if one of them is sticking out of the shell or has a bad smell, it is best to remove it from the tank.

Avoid predators such as Pea Puffers to keep your aquarium safe for snails. Consider changing the water level, so the snails don't get out.

  • Bladder snail

  • Common snails belong to the group Physidae Physidae and are famous for their brown, bulbous, speckled shells. Their size is less than an inch (22.5 cm), making it easy for them to reach every nook and cranny in your tank. They can grow up to 2-3 inches (8-8 cm) long and prefer to eat aquatic plants. They can tolerate various pH and temperature levels and are not picky about water parameters.

    If you experience a snail population boom, reduce the food in your tank, control algae growth, and vacuum the gravel more often to remove excess organic matter. The snail population will stabilise when the food source is exhausted.

  • Nerite snail

  • The Neritidae family of snails is well-known to freshwater aquarium keepers. They can even eat blue-spotted algae. They are about 0.5 to 1.5 inches (11.3 to 3.8 cm) in length with various colours such as olive, red racer, tiger and, horned, nerite. They can escape easily, so make sure to keep the aquarium closed. You can supplement their diet with cooked chickpeas and zucchini slices.

    They may leave white capsules but not hatch in fresh water. Therefore, you don't need to worry about them spawning out of control.

  • Black snail

  • This is one of the more unique-looking species on our list. Black Devil Snails come in quite a bit of black, immediately making them stand out in any tank.

    They have very long and relatively smooth conical shells. The faint spirals are only visible because the lines you can see run from one end to the other.

    The black snail is a reasonably long adult species (up to 3.5 inches). Although this one is not as long as the Rabbit Snail, it still dwarfs many other freshwater species.

    One of the nice things about these creatures is that they won't cause overpopulation problems. Even if you want to breed them, it's a challenge!

    This is one of the fastest-moving aquarium snails on our list! How quickly it goes from one end of the tank to the other can surprise you.

  • Ramshorn snail

  • Blue ramshorn snail is a beautiful and helpful addition to any freshwater aquarium. These snails are excellent at consuming algae and uneaten food and won't harm your plants. They are also relatively easy to care for and reproduce quickly.

    The blue ramshorn snail, in particular, is worth taking a closer look at. These snails have a unique, striking blue colour that can add a beautiful pop of colour to your aquarium. They are also excellent at consuming algae and uneaten food, which can help keep your aquarium clean and healthy. Additionally, they are peaceful creatures and won't bother your other tank inhabitants.

    Caring for blue ramshorn snails is relatively easy. They prefer a slightly acidic pH and a temperature range of 68-82°F. They will consume various foods, including algae wafers, sinking pellets, and blanched vegetables. Ensure your aquarium has enough calcium for the snails to build and maintain healthy shells. Crushed coral or cuttlebone can be added to the substrate or filter for this vital nutrient.

    There are several benefits to adding 3-5 Blue Ramshorn snails to your aquarium tank:

    • Algae control: Blue Ramshorn snails are excellent at consuming algae, which can quickly overgrow your tank and create an unhealthy environment for your fish. Adding Blue Ramshorn snails can help control algae and ensure your aquarium remains healthy and clean.
    • Cleaning up uneaten food: Blue Ramshorn snails are also great at cleaning up any uneaten food in your tank. This helps prevent the build-up of organic waste, which can create harmful conditions for your fish and other aquatic life.
    • Natural aquarium cleaners: Blue Ramshorn snails are honest cleaners that help keep your aquarium tidy and well-maintained. They are peaceful creatures that won't bother your other tank inhabitants. They can be a great addition to any freshwater aquarium.
    • Aesthetic appeal: Blue Ramshorn snails have a unique, striking blue colour that can add a beautiful pop of colour to your aquarium. They are also fascinating to watch as they move slowly and methodically around the tank, making them an excellent addition to anyone who enjoys observing aquatic life.
    • Low maintenance: Blue Ramshorn snails are relatively low-maintenance creatures that are easy to care for. They can thrive in a variety of water conditions. They can be fed various foods, including algae wafers, sinking pellets, and blanched vegetables. They are also hardy and can adapt to changes in their environment relatively quickly.

    Adding 3-5 Blue Ramshorn snails to your aquarium tank can provide several benefits, including improved algae control, natural aquarium cleaning, aesthetic appeal, and low maintenance. Blue Ramshorn snails are worth considering if you're looking for a valuable and exciting addition to your freshwater aquarium.

  • Mystery Snail

  • Pomacea bridge is a species of snail common to South America that is 2-2.5 inches (5-6 cm) in diameter. Unlike larger pomace species, such as the Peruvian snail or the giant apple snail, they pose no threat to plants. There are varieties available in jade green, blue, brown, purple and magenta colours. They are very active and agile. You can see them resting near the water's surface and opening their breathing tubes to inhale it.

    Mysterious snails are not hermaphrodites, and males and females can be sexed by holding the shell so that its legs are upright as if it were climbing a wall. The body can reveal that the female has two holes in her shoulder while the male has only one. When the female spawns, she enters the surface and places eggs on the water. It's easy to manage their population as large egg clusters can be removed if you don't want to.

  • Malaysian trumpet snail

  • Melanoides tuberculate is a species of nocturnal snail with a shell 22.5 cm long. They are pointed, long brown and usually nocturnal. They spend a lot of time in the substrate waiting for it to get dark, and then burrow. People love them because they often turn over gravel and sand, which will help mix nutrients for the aquatic plants in the tank. They can survive in conditions unsuitable for other snail species and are very resilient. Like the nerite snail, they are highly salt tolerant and can be adapted to live in brackish aquariums.

    Although the Malaysian trumpet snail is not hermaphroditic, their reproductive rate is speedy as the female can make copies without a male. After the eggs hatch, they are placed in the mother's incubation box and released by the mother to become miniature adults.

  • Assassin Snail


    Anentome Helena is a 1-inch (2.5 cm) snail from Southeast Asia with a pointed, rough shell with beautiful brown and yellow stripes resembling a bumblebee. However, the killer snail is a carnivore, eating other snails, and it is not like other detritus. It likes to burrow in the ground and emerge when it detects prey.

     Many aquarists use them to eliminate smaller snails such as slugs and slugs. Killer snails can also take down more giant snails.

    Killer snails are not fertile and are not hermaphrodites. Each egg is contained within a single square egg.

  • Rabbit snail

  • The Sulawesi snail and the rabbit Tylomelania Genus is native to Indonesia. They can withstand temperatures up to 80-86 degrees F (27-30 degrees C). Similar to Malaysian conch snails, their shells are long and pointed. But they will grow larger to reach a size of 3-5 inches (8-13cm). They have brown to black shells, antennae resembling rabbit ears, and bodies in various colours and patterns.

    Although they typically eat fish food, blanched vegetables, and soft algae, they can begin to nibble on plants with more delicate leaves and stems if they need to be fed more. They can tolerate thicker, harder plants, such as Anubias.

    Rabbit snails are very peaceful, move slowly and reproduce slowly. They are not hermaphroditic and can produce live snails like the Malaysian conch. You should see baby snails every 4-6 weeks. However, the young can take some time to mature.

  • Japanese Snail

  • Their shell is shaped like misty vortex and usually has three distinct spirals. Sizes can vary greatly, ranging from half an inch to two inches. Despite its small size, this species cleans the tank very well.

    They also can live longer than many other snail species. It's common for these fish to reach the five-year mark. Some even double that number!

    Japanese trap snails are active at all times (including at night). This makes them great for aquarists who want a viewer-friendly snail.

    Snails are great cleaning crew members that help break down organic matter into nutrients aquatic plants can use. They live peacefully with shrimp and fish in the tank. The unique thing is that they contribute to making your aquarium more eye-catching and diverse in the biological community in your aquarium.

    Time to choose!

    Now that you know all the best aquarium snails, it's time to decide which one you like best. We're snail fans at the Micro Aquatic Shop and can't stop talking about our snails. They are adorable and so much fun to watch!
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