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How Many Snails Per Gallon- Mystery, Nerite, Turbo, Nassarius, Trochus, Trumpet

If you are a first-time snail owner, you must be wondering how many of them can you keep at once in your aquarium. There are rules such as “An inch of snail per gallon of water,” which might sound confusing.

Furthermore, there is a large variety of freshwater and marine snails. Each type has unique characteristics which call for specific feeding and care.

This article sheds light on how many snails per gallon you should keep in your aquarium. We not only talk about numbers but take an in-depth approach to proper feeding and care.

Let’s get started.

Table of Contents

More About Aquatic Snails

Typically, freshwater snails carry a shell at the back of their bodies. The shell is covered by an operculum, a flap that occasionally closes as a defense mechanism against predators. It also prevents the snail’s body from drying out.

Their foot is large and muscular and occasionally retracts back to their shell. They move by their muscular foot, leaving a slime trail along their path.

Your little friends multiply rapidly, filling an aquarium quickly, given their hermaphroditic nature. 

Mystery Snails

Mystery snails (Pomacea bridgesii) are among the most popular in the aquarium ecosystem. They are fascinating with a unique bodily appearance and are sometimes confused with apple snails.

The gastropods do well in tropical tanks with algae patches. Aquarists are better off having mystery snails in their aquarium tanks since they help reduce the algae population.

Mystery snails are handy to clean your substrate and add color to your aquarium. 

Body Features 

Their colorful shells, swaying tentacles, complex eyes, and iridescent bodies make them unique. The snails are also distinctive because they can breathe through their gills or a siphon extending out of their bodies on the front.

The snails use the tube for breathing by extending it above the waterline and moving back and forth to take the water in. Their long, large tentacles act as sensory organs in their environment. 

Mystery Snail Breeding 

Mystery snail males are light and carry white genitalia on their bodies’ right side. On the flip side, the females have a dark whorl around the tip.

You can quickly identify the gender type when you look at the inside of their shells when they aren’t retracted. Both types are required in the tank for breeding to occur.

You can obtain them from a trusted seller within your area. The female Mystery snails lay their eggs close to the water surface in a long cocoon—these eggs hatch in a few weeks. 


Mystery snails are 2-3 inches in size. However, some species measure about 1-1.25 inches. If your mystery snail is smaller, it could indicate poor care or breeding.

However, some snails may fail to grow from a one-inch diameter and still be considered healthy and fully developed. 

Life Span 

Mystery snails can live up to three years. They are sensitive to the environment and will succumb when there is a change in water parameters.

Another fatal cause could be transporting them over long distances.

Mystery snails’ different colors include blue, ivory, golden, black, ivory, magenta, and purple. 

Behavior and Temperament 

The snails love peace and are generally non-aggressive. They will keep up with shrimps, fish, and other plants in the same aquarium.

Sometimes mystery snails go dormant for a while, and you may mistake them for being dead. This is normal and should be no cause for alarm. Their movements within the aquarium are a lot quicker than the average snail. 

Mystery snails will duck into their shells when they perceive danger or get spooked. 

Mystery Snail Care

You should look into several factors to ensure you are taking good care of them.

The tiny creatures are not demanding, and any novice aquarist can understand their requirements for a healthy survival pretty fast. This section discusses more of these factors in detail. 

Mystery Snails Per Gallon

The minimum tank size for adult Mystery snails is 10 gallons. Ideally, you should stock four Mystery snails in a ten-gallon water tank. 1-2 Mystery snails are recommended for a five-gallon water tank. 

How Should You Set Up a Mystery Snail Tank?

snail-in-aquariumApart from growing live plants in your aquarium for their food, Mystery snails will need something to keep them busy. Substrate soil comes in handy here. There is a range of substrates you could go for, such as pebbles, sand, or gravel.

Overall, you should use a soft substrate to prevent injury. Something else you could add to your aquarium to spruce it up is artificial accessories such as plastic divers, mermaids, or treasure chests.

If you are a nature enthusiast, you could also do with some natural additions such as shells, rocks, and a range of colorful aquatic plants.

How about exploring the idea of old glass jars or ceramic pieces? These are handy in creating play and hide spots for your Mystery Snails. Some aquarists alter the background of their snail tank to create illusions of different spaces.

Recommended Water Parameters 

A healthy water state for your little pets is paramount to their survival. You will need to pay close attention to ensure you give them the best possible conditions.

Mystery snails are accustomed to specific water levels and exhibit high sensitivity whenever sudden changes occur. 

Below are the ideal water parameters required for mystery snails. 

  • pH levels: 7.6 to 8.4
  • Water temperature: 20 – 29 degrees celsius 
  • Water hardness: 12 -18 kH

Another critical thing to consider here is the shells the mystery snails carry. You want to ensure an abundant supply of calcium for their nourishment and healthy growth.

You should replenish the tank regularly with fresh water. It helps lower the nitrate concentration— maintaining a favorable environment for healthy growth. 

Mystery Snail Tank Mates 

As earlier mentioned, Mystery snails are peaceful creatures by nature. This explains their popularity in freshwater tanks.

A criterion to use when sourcing tank mates is to look at their mouth sizes relative to the snail. Tankmates with large enough mouths aren’t recommended since they will quickly turn the snails into a food source.

Ideal tank mates for your Mystery snails include

  • Swordtails 
  • Mollies 
  • Gourami 
  • Danios 
  • Cory catfish
  • Betta fish 
  • Red-tailed sharks 
  • Tetras 
  • Platies 
  • Shrimp 

Mystery Snail Feeding 

Mystery snails are active omnivorous feeders and eat anything from decayed fish, invertebrates, algae, and other vegetation in the aquarium.

Ensure the aquatic environment is favorable to algae growth— smooth surfaces prove ideal. You can supplement natural growing algae with algae wagers to ensure your little friends have enough to eat all year-round.

snail-foodBelow is a list of alternative food options for your Mystery snails. 

  • Zucchini 
  • Kale 
  • Lettuce 
  • Cucumber 
  • Spinach
  • Green leafy salads 

Commercial food will include: 

  • Sinking Pellets
  • Catfish sinking pellets
  • Live plants 

Soften the veggies in boiling water to make them consumable. Leftovers should be dragged out of the tank with a net after feeding. This helps prevent fouling of the tank water. 

Nerite Snails

neritaLike Mystery snails, Nerite snails (Nerita) thrive in freshwater aquariums but have a history with saltwater habitats. Their natural habitats include seashores, rivers, and streams.

They feed on algae and clean the aquarium tank substrates.

Types of Nerite Snails 

The Nerite family contains over 200 snail species. They share the same anatomy and marking patterns but differ in color. Below is a list of the different types of Nerite snails:

1. Zebra Nerite Snails

The Zebra Nerite snails have black or yellow strips cutting across the body towards the coil center. Their body color is greyish. 

2. Tiger Nerite Snails

Tiger nerite snails have a much more pronounced orange color with jagged strips, making them have a unique look. 

3. Olive Nerite Snails 

These are an exception to the first two. They lack distinctive patterns on their shells.

These snails are olive in color and have contrasting black coils. 

4. Horned Nerite Snails

As the naming suggests, Horned Nerite snails have horns at the end of one stripe. Their bodies are covered with thick yellow and black stripes. 

Body Features 

Like typical snails, Nerite snails carry hard coiled shells. The little creatures also have a muscular foot that moves sideways to enable the snail to move forward. 

Nerite Snail Breeding

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While most snails undergo parthenogenesis, Nerite snails are an exception. Females produce eggs that get to be fertilized by the males.

They breed and lay eggs in freshwater habitats or aquariums. The presence of the males triggers females to lay eggs.

However, these eggs require brackish water conditions to hatch.

You want to cover the aquarium filter inlet with a sponge due to the small size of the larvae. 


Under the right aquarium conditions, Nerite snails can grow up to 1 inch. However, their bodies change with age.

Old snails appear larger than their young counterparts. Depending on the species, a Nerite snail will range between ¼ to 1 inch in size. 

Life Span 

The lifespan of Nerite Snails is one year under ideal conditions. A change in the environment from their natural habitat to the aquarium may cause some to lose their lives within weeks of being added.

Some Nerite snails live up to two years. Sudden demise after addition could be due to transportation stress or unfavorable water conditions in the aquarium. 

Behavior and Temperament 

Nerite snails, like Mystery snails, are very peaceful creatures. They are never up to any mischief inside the aquarium tank.

You will spot them moving around the aquarium, slowly eating the growing algae. They are also quite compatible with other fish in the aquarium.

Sometimes during movements, the snail may turn over. You shouldn’t worry about it as they can quickly get themselves back into position. They may need a helping hand at times, though. 

Nerite Snail Care

Taking good care of your Nerite snail involves implementing several key actions, as we discuss below. 

Nerite Snails Per Gallon

Many gardeners ponder over the question of how many Nerite snails they should keep per gallon of water. There is no rocket science behind this. The table below sheds some light. 

Tank Capacity (Gallons)  Nerite Snails Count 
5 1
10 2
15 3
20 4

Nerite Snails Tank Set-Up 

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As earlier mentioned, Nerite snails can thrive in both marine and freshwater environments. This section focuses on the habitats and ideal tank set up for them. 

Freshwater Habitat 

When preparing a freshwater aquarium for your Nerite snails, ensure to create a conducive environment for them. Adding rocks and driftwood is an excellent first step in actualizing this.

You could also insert artificial caves into the aquarium to provide them with hiding spots. Ensure to plant low-growing plants such as the Java fern.

A typical characteristic of freshwater Nerite snails is coming up above the water’s surface at night.

It’s vital to lower the water levels in the aquarium to recreate the conditions the snails are accustomed to in their natural environment. With lower levels, nerite snails can come out of the water surface for a while.

Also Read:
How To Make Zoanthids Grow Fast

Ensure your aquarium water tank is free of ammonia while maintaining the nitrate at healthy levels.

Recommended Water Parameters ( Fresh Water Habitat)

  • pH levels: 8.1 to 8.4
  • Water temperature: 22 – 25 degrees celsius 
  • Nitrate levels should be less than 20ppm.
  • The aquarium should be ammonia-free. 

Marine Habitat 

Marine Nerite snails love saline natural habitats such as the estuaries and the mangroves. Typically, these places have lots of rocks and algae growth.

Setting up a marine habitat aquarium demands that you extend the same conditions for the well-being of marine nerite snails. You want to provide them with rocks and potential hiding spots.

Provide them with a sandy bottom to prevent damaging their sensitive tentacles. Ideally, you should provide a calcium-rich substrate to promote the growth of their shells. 

Recommended Water Parameters (Marine Habitat) 

  • pH levels: 8.1 to 8.4
  • Salinity – 1.020 -1.028sg (specific gravity)
  • Water temperature: 22 – 25 degrees celsius 

Nerite Snail Tank Mates 

Given their peaceful nature, you want to keep your Nerite snails with similar companions that love peace and will not disrupt their less dramatic existence. Potential tankmates to Nerite snails include: 

  • Ghost Shrimp 
  • Guppies 
  • Tetras 
  • Barbs 

You could also keep only Nerite snails in the aquarium. Ensure you don’t overstock them. 

Nerite Snail Feeding 

kale-greenNerite snails feed on algae and other sea plants. They consume all algae types ranging from the soft green, soft brown, film type to the green spot algae.

However, this doesn’t mean you should use the Nerite snails to control an algae overgrowth or invasion in your aquarium. The best cause of action is always determining the root cause of the problem and finding a tangible solution to eliminate it.

Nerite snails are always on the go during feeding and will move up and down your tank. Algae growth in your aquarium should be enough for their feeding needs.

You can also supplement their diet with vegetables such as :

  • Zucchini 
  • Spinach 
  • Kale 
  • Carrots & 
  • Algae wafers

Turbo Snails 

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The Turbo snails are a good fit for the saltwater aquarium. They serve the primary purpose of eliminating excessive algae in your marine aquarium.

The little pets will be worth the investment if you look to clean up your marine aquarium tank. Turbo snails are also commonly referred to as Mexican Turbo snails.

Body Features 

The Turbo snail has a thick brown shell shaped like a turban. The shell contains the operculum that the snail will hide under whenever it feels endangered or offended.

Turbo snails have a foot that extends out of their shell whenever they are in motion. 


The Turbo snail can grow up to 2 inches under the right conditions. Only in rare circumstances do they grow up to 4 inches. 

Life Span 

Turbo snails live around 1 to 2 years but sometimes exceed this age range. 

Behavior and Temperament 

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Turbo snails are naturally peaceful and can coexist with other aquarium organisms such as the invertebrates and the community fish. Avoid housing Turbo snails with aggressive aquarium invertebrates. 

Turbo Snail Care 

Like any aquarium organism, the Turbo snail requires utmost care for survival. While they can survive in a saltwater aquarium, the environment becomes inhabitable under high temperatures. 

How Many Turbo Snails Per Gallon? 

A Turbo snail tank should be spacious enough to support their healthy growth with the right water volume. The recommended tank size is 10 gallons. One Turbo snail is sufficient for a 5-10 gallon tank.

Turbo Snail Tank Set-Up 

Turbo snails are not tied to specific tank requirements when keeping them. They can tolerate poor husbandry practices in the aquarium.

Turbo snails thrive best in sandy substrate since it also forms a greater part of their natural habitat.

Add live rocks to your aquarium pond for the snails to feed and graze on. Avoid using copper medications in your aquarium as it can harm them.

Also, keep the nitrate levels of your aquarium at the required levels for the survival of your Turbo snails. 

Recommended Water Parameters 

  • pH: 8.0 -8.4 
  • Water: (22-27) degrees celsius 
  • Specific Gravity: 1.023 – 1.025 
  • Water hardness (KH): 8 -12 

Turbo Snail Tank Mates 

Turbo snails can comfortably live with non-aggressive mates in the same aquarium. You could keep them with invertebrates such as the Tangs. Ideal tank mates include

  • Snails: Corinth, Trochus, Bumblebee,
  • Shrimps: Red Fire, Skunk Cleaner, Pederson Cleaner 

Turbo Snail Feeding 

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The Mexica Turbo snail is a herbivore and will feed on many algae types found in an aquarium. Familiar places where they consume algae include corals, live rock, and aquarium glass.

Turbo snails are voracious eaters, and a large population in your tank will clear algae within no time. A recommended supplement for the snail is a dried seaweed sheet. 

Nassarius Snails 

Another saltwater snail is the Nassarius which also feeds on the algae in your aquarium. However, Nassarius snails don’t do the bulk of feeding on algae but engage in sand-sifting.

They regularly burrow in and out of the substrate surface, thus helping reduce microbial decomposition. 

Types of Nassarius Snails 

There is a lower classification of the Nassarius snails, which includes: 

1. Eastern Mudsnail

The Eastern Mudsnail is a marine gastropod mollusk in the family Nasarriidae. It feeds on many microscopic aquatic plants found atop mud films. Their shells have an oval aperture with a chalky white exterior but are covered with a dark brown periostracum. 

2. Tritia Mutabilis 

Another gastropod mollusk in the Nasarriidae family is the Tritia Mutabilis. Their shell is smooth, ovate, and conical and has remarkable color varieties. The color variations include red, brown, and white.

The snail’s spire has several whorls with a swollen upper part that turns out to be larger than other body parts. 

3. Tritia reticulata 

Common referred to as netted dog whelk; the Tritia reticulata is a gastropod mollusk in the family Nasarriidae. They have an elongated egg-shaped shell pointed at the upper extremity and obtuse at the lower extreme.

Their conical spire has eight to nine whorls slightly swollen and distant from each other. 

4. Phrontis tiarula 

The common name for Phrontis tiarula is western mud nassa. It’s a marine gastropod mollusk in the family Nassariidae. 

Body Features

The Nasssarius snails are small-sized with a relatively rugged shell. Their shell is spiral and ends with a sharp spire. The outer texture of the shell is also tough.

These shells are generally beautiful because of the various color bands, including beige, tan, and brown. Their assorted color and texture make them attractive and usable as display animals. 

Nasarrius Snails Breeding 

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Nasarrius snails are difficult creatures to breed. Even scientists find it difficult to breed them in the lab. They readily lay eggs in the aquarium, but the chances of those eggs hatching to larvae are slim.

Typically, they lay their eggs on hard surfaces like aquarium glass. They aren’t hermaphroditic, but it’s pretty challenging to differentiate the gender type without microscopic vision.

Nassarius snails spend most of their time burrowing; thus, it’s hard to spot them mating. Their larvae are planktonic in size and could easily get swept up in the filter. 


Nassarius snails are ½ – 1 inch in size

Life Span 

Nassarius, under suitable conditions, live two years or longer. 


Nassarius snails are generally peaceful and can coexist with other marine organisms in the same aquatic environment. 

Nassarius Snail Care

Like any other marine aquatic organism, Nassarius snails need utmost care for survival.

During their care, some things to look into are the number of snails per gallon, the aquarium water parameters, and what tank mates you should keep close with them. 

Nassarius Snails Per Gallon 

Add 1-2 Nassarius snails per gallon of tank volume. 

Nassarius Snail Tank Set-up 

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Give your Nassarius snails the best experience by laying sand or mud bed in the aquarium tank.

We recommend adding them into the aquarium after the substrate has matured and enough debris build-up.

Avoid the use of copper in the aquarium with snails and other invertebrates.  

Recommended Water Parameters 

  • pH: 8.2
  • Water temperature: 21 degrees celsius 
  • Specific Gravity: 1.025 
  • Ammonia, Nitrates, Nitrites: Should be at near-zero levels

Nassarius Snail Tank Mates 

Your Nassarius snails will perfectly coexist with the following tank mates. 

  • Predatory fish (Should be non-invertebrate hunters)
  • Starfish
  • Shrimps 
  • Soft corals 
  • Giant clams 
  • Hermit crabs (Exercise caution) 

Nassarius Snail Feeding 

Source | Mysis Shrimps (

Feeding Nassarius snails is easy because they aren’t fussy about food types. Their feeding habit involves sifting under the substrate during the day and detritus at night. They feed on anything rich in protein.

Their siphons always lay extended from beneath the sand and will pounce on food made available to them. You can feed them with the following: 

  • Flakes
  • Mysis Shrimps 
  • Thawed brine
  • Fresh seafood
  • Pellets 

Any food additions should be in measured quantities to avoid leftovers in your aquarium. Excess leftovers rot and fill up your tank with ammonia. 

Trochus Snails 

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The Trochus snails are another type of gastropod you want to have around your saltwater aquarium. These are handy to clean up your aquarium as well.

Other names for the Trochus snails include Top Shell Snail, Turban Snail, and Black Foot Trochus. 

Trochus Snail Types 

1. Trochus maculatus 

Trochus maculatus has a solid, heavy shell, and it’s conical in shape. The shell size varies between 2.5 to 6.4 cm. Though strictly conical, the spire takes different forms, with a concave shape below and a tapered shape above.

Sometimes, it appears constricted around the upper part of the body whorl. 

2. Trochus calcaratus 

Trochus calcaratus shell has an elate-conic shape with a length of ( 18- 40) mm. Its spire has almost rectilinear outlines with nine whorls. 

3. Trochus noduliferus 

The shell of Trochus noduliferus is large, solid, and imperforate with a conical shape. This snail type has a diameter of 75mm.  

4. Trochus radiatus 

Trochus radiatus has a thick, solid, trochoidal shell with a length that varies between (17-40)mm. The shell’s color is typically yellow whitish but has a green tinge with uninterrupted axial, crimson flames. 

Body Features

Among the attractive shells you will find in the gastropods family is that of Trochus snails. Their ornamental qualities are worth your attention and are priced highly by marine aquarists.

Their shell is conical with a pointed spire and a bottom that is flattened, having eight to ten whorls. A vital trait of the Trochus snails is their ability to right themselves when they fall, reducing the time you have to turn them over.

When hiding under their shells, a small operculum covers the opening. Their foot is black with an off-white underside. 

Trochus Snail Breeding 

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It’s pretty easy for Trochus snails to breed inside the aquarium, but getting the larvae to develop into adulthood is challenging. You will find it difficult to distinguish between male and female snails.

However, if you get a proper mix of genders and raise them to maturity, breeding is the next thing that follows.

So, how does breeding take place in Trochus snails? Trochus snails are broadcast spawners.

The females release millions of eggs into the water while the males will release a spermatic fluid, a cloudy white substance. This results in your aquarium tank turning white for several hours.

The fertilized eggs will hatch larvae that settle in the aquarium and begin growing into adult snails. Trochus snails in the wild breed under the new moon.

You can get the best results by replicating such conditions in your tank by modifying the light conditions. The larval stage takes 3-7 days before metamorphosizing into adults. 


Trochus snails are 1-2 inches in size when fully grown. 

Life Span 

Under proper care and suitable conditions, Trochus snails can live for 2-3 years. Scientists have concluded that there is a relationship between body size and lifespan.

Trochus snails with an extensive body size live longer than ones with short bodies.

Behavior and Temperament

Classical of snails, Trochus snails are peaceful and solitary. They are harmless with no means to attack their enemies. The best they can do is hide inside their shells when under attack.

These snails are not the burrowing type but can comfortably blend with rocks because of their shells. This makes them invisible to the untrained eye.

Sometimes, the snails also exhibit erratic behavior. They can become active for a while but suddenly go dormant.

Trochus snails characteristically flip themselves either upright or upside down. Some have attributed this behavior to stress. It’s vital to ensure the conditions in your aquarium are favorable for their longevity and life.

Additionally, Trochus snails are nocturnal. They hide under the rocks in the daytime but come out at night to graze. 

Trochus Snail Care 

Trochus snails are low-maintenance creatures. Despite this, you still got to maintain them under the right aquarium conditions as expected of other gastropods. Some essential factors you need to keep in mind include the following. 

Trochus Snails Per Gallon 

Trochus snails require enough tank spacing for their survival. The recommended stocking measure is one adult trochus snail per ten gallons of tank volume for the best results.

You may be tempted to work with a lower tank volume because of their small size. But this is bound to fail since Trochus snails are voracious eaters and overgrow a small tank within a short while. 

Trochus Snail Tank Set-Up 

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Trochus snails love a rocky environment which means you should create similar conditions in your aquarium tank. Include plenty of structures in your tank for the snails to feed, crawl and seek shelter.

An essential step in ensuring snail tank survival is acclimatizing them as all invertebrates to fit in their environment. 

Recommended Water Parameters

  • pH: 8.1 -8.4 
  • Water temperature: 23-26 degrees celsius 
  • Lightning – They are nocturnal creatures and need light at moderate levels.
  • Calcium and Magnesium – Calcium concentration should be 400-450 ppm, while magnesium should be 1250 -1350 ppm optimal. 

Trochus Snail Tank Mates 

Given their peaceful nature, Trochus snails want peaceful living conditions. So other friendly organisms they can coexist with include. 

  • Shrimps: Red Fire shrimp, Peppermint shrimp, Skunk cleaner 
  • Snails: Cerith snails, Turbo snails, Conch snails

Trochus Snail Feeding 

Source | cyanobacteria)

Trochus snails are herbivorous and well known for their grazing habits. They pack a radula that they use for feeding algae, red cyanobacteria, and diatoms.

Trochus snails feed on algae in the film stage before they become a nuisance for them.

You can also augment their diet with the following items: 

  • Algae wafers 
  • Nori 

Malaysian Trumpet Snails 

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Another name for the Malaysian Trumpet snail is the burrowing snail. These are freshwater snails from the Thiaridae family.

They are versatile creatures common in aquariums but can survive in multiple conditions once the bare minimum necessities are met. 

Scientifically, Malaysian Trumpet snails are known as Melanoides tuberculata.

Body Features 

The shells of Malaysian Trumpet snails are cone-shaped and greenish-brown with reddish spots. The shell ages as the snails grow, giving the clearest indicator of their age.

The shell has approximately ten to fifteen whorls. Some snails have red spots circling the whorls.

The heads of these snails are usually flat, with two tentacles at the head’s base that hold the eyes.

Additionally, female Malaysian snails are longer than male ones. 

Malaysian Trumpet Snails Breeding 

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Breeding in Malaysian Trumpet snails is pretty straightforward. Malaysian Trumpet snails give birth by mating and a process called parthenogenesis. Parthenogenesis involves females giving birth to young female clones identical to them.

The male snails don’t need to fertilize the female eggs for reproduction. The female multiplies into a whole colony through parthenogenesis, which helps explain their rapid growth. 

A female snail in this species can produce over 200 young ones.

Usual reproduction in Malaysian Trumpet snails typically occurs when there is a significant presence of males. Their embryos develop into broad pouches before becoming juveniles with 5-6 whorls.

There is a survival rate for the embryos in the pouch; not all mature to the juvenile stage since they get eaten by other embryos in the brood pouch.

The hatching takes place at night to produce newborns that are about 0.08 inches.

The juveniles always take a short period to reach maturity, thus beginning the process of producing the next Malaysian Trumpet snail generation. 


Under the right conditions, Malaysian Trumpet snails grow to an inch in length from the apex to the aperture. They have a pencil eraser kind of diameter at their widest ends. 

Life Span

The lifespan of a Malaysian trumpet snail is one year. But this period isn’t cast in stone; the snails can live for more than one year under exceptional circumstances.

Some aquarists recommend leaving a lifeless Malaysian Trumpet snail in the aquarium to allow the minerals to dissolve back into the aquarium water. 


Typical of snails, the Malaysian trumpet snail is a peaceful creature that doesn’t endanger the lives of other tankmates. These snails are slow-moving and find it difficult to escape when under attack.

However, they can hide inside their shells and cover themselves with an operculum when under threat.

The snails burrow in the substrate using their mouth and hide during the day. They become active at the drop of light and resume looking for food.

Their substrate movements help prevent the build-up of toxic gases that could pollute the aquarium water. You will always spot them moving around the tank, searching for food.

This snail type breeds rapidly; thus, you should be prepared for exponential growth in their population.

Malaysian Trumpet Snail Care 

Caring for your Malaysian Trumpet snail is critical if you intend to have them live longer and healthier. Taking care of these snails will involve putting the following tips into practice. 

How Many Malaysian Trumpet Snails Per Gallon?

As mentioned earlier, Malaysian snails breed and multiply rapidly. Keeping too many of them in one tank will lead to overpopulation.

Avoid overstocking for their healthy living. 1-2 snails per gallon are enough if they are the only species you keep in the tank. 

Malaysian Trumpet Tank Set-Up 

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Malaysian Trumpet snails thrive well in small aquariums between 5 to 10 gallons. However, they also survive well in larger gallon sizes.

Maintaining small tanks is more challenging than maintaining large tanks.

Ensure to layer your aquarium tank with a soft sandy substrate to accommodate their burrowing nature. Gravels and pebbles aren’t ideal substrate materials for the same reason.

That said, ensure you leave some space in a section of your aquarium for planting preferred plants for food and shelter. 

Recommended Water Parameters 

  • pH: 7.0 – 7.5 
  • Water: (21-23) degrees celsius 
  • Lighting: Maintain the standard aquarium lighting
  • Ammonia & nitrate levels – 0 ppm  

Malaysian Trumpet Tank Mates 

Here are the ideal trumpet tank mates you should have around. However, do always check compatibility before adding them.

  • Certain loaches 
  • Oscars 
  • Puffers 
  • Small fish: Mollies, Tiger Barbs, Neon Tetras, Corydoras catfish
  • Invertebrates: Ghost shrimp, bamboo shrimp, Mystery snails, Ramshorn snails

Malaysian Trumpet Snail Feeding 

cucumberMalaysian Trumpet snails mainly feed when the night sets in after lying under the substrate the entire day.

They aren’t fussy about the food type and will munch on organic food found on the aquarium floor. Common organic matter includes fish waste, dead fish, dead plants, and fish food remnants.

Algae growing on most aquarium surfaces also form a significant part of their diet. Additional food items in the aquarium for your snail include the following. 

  • Broccoli 
  • Spinach
  • Lettuce 
  • Cucumber 

These vegetable types add calcium to the snail’s diet, which helps to encourage the growth of their shells. 

Assassin Snails

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Assassin snails (Clean helena) are freshwater snails belonging to the family Buccinidae. These snails are predatory by nature and will feed on other tiny snails. Clearly, they are not a perfect fit for an aquarist looking for an aquarium cleaning crew.

But if you are looking to clear other pests within your aquarium, you can have them do the job. 

Body Features 

Assassin snails have a conical-shaped shell with yellow and brown stripes. This makes them earn the pseudonym Bumblebee snails. Sometimes they may develop a brown color in rare circumstances. They breathe using a long extended tube, the siphon.

Typical of snails, their shells have an operculum that closes up whenever the snail is hiding inside its shell. They contain strong muscles inside their shells that enable them to move forward by contracting.

Their heads have a tentacle attached, allowing them to move around searching for food. 

Assassin Snails Breeding

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The assassin snails have defined gender types though you can’t recognize them by appearance. We advise having at least six snails in your aquarium tank to increase the odds of having both males and females around.

The aquarium tank is still a perfect breeding ground since they don’t mind breeding in captivity. However, ensure you are providing the right conditions for their breeding, which include:

  • Warm temperatures 
  • High-quality food (live snails, worms) 
  • A fine substrate for comfort 
  • Zero concentrations of nitrates. 

A characteristic nature of assassin snails is following each other and coupling up when they are about to breed. This occurs for around 12 hours. The snails will lay tiny eggs that attach to hard surfaces after mating.

The eggs hatch after 20-30 days releasing juveniles that burrow into the substrate until maturity. This takes six months on average. 


Assassin snails are generally tiny and reach 2 inches when fully mature. But a majority of them rarely go beyond 0.8 – 1 inch. 

Life Span 

Assassin snails have a short life span of two years, provided they are in good health. Some aquarists breed them for four to five years under perfect water and diet conditions, but this is rare. 

Behavior and Temperament

Despite their predatory nature, assassin snails are peaceful creatures. They are dormant during the day but come out of hiding at night to scavenge for food. These snails are secretive and lie in mud or rocks when not hunting for food.

Their long siphon helps out hunting by extending to hold up its prey. Assassin snails will eat the smaller snails and avoid the more enormous creatures in the aquarium tank.

The snails oscillate at the bottom of the tank and rarely move up, but occasionally you will spot them climbing up the glass and other decorations within the aquarium.

Assassin snails will avoid bright light environments courtesy of their eyestalk and feelers. These features also help them detect predatory movements in the water.

Assassin Snail Care 

The factors you should consider for assassin snail care include the following.  

Assassin Snails Per Gallon 

Keep two assassin snails for every five gallons of water tank volume. You should preferably work with at least a 10-gallon water tank. Bigger is always better. 

Assassin Snail Tank Set-Up 

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Success in your aquarium tank set-up demands that you mimic the natural environment of the Assassin snails.

  • Ensure the tank bottom is a sandy substrate to provide surroundings conducive to their burrowing nature.
  • Put some decorations inside the tank for their climbing.
  • Keep the tank water fresh and a little saline.
  • Also, put some rocks on top of the sand substrate to create a semblance of a tiny cave system.
Also Read:
How To Turn A Fish Tank Into A Garden: Step By Step Guide

You can grow some plants inside the aquarium tank if you want, but they will be of little benefit to assassin snails.

Recommended Water Parameters 

  • pH: 7-8 
  • Temperature: (24-28) degrees celsius 
  • Water: Slightly hard 
  • Lighting: Maintain the standard aquarium lighting
  • Ammonia & nitrate levels – 0 ppm      

Assassin Snail Tank Mates 

Given their carnivorous nature, you want to be pretty cautious when selecting mates for assassin snails. You want to keep them with similar-sized invertebrates and fish.

Here are some options to look for. 

  • Surface dwelling fish 
  • Corydoras 
  • Danios 
  • Tetras 
  • Dwarf cichlids 
  • Freshwater shrimp 
  • Killifish

 Assassin Snail Feeding

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Assassin snails are hunters and will find food on their own. They commonly feed on other snails and worms in their natural environment.

However, if they are stocked with other invertebrates, competition for food is likely to increase.

Augment their diet with meaty substances such as:

  • Pellets 
  • Commercial fish flakes 
  • Water fleas 
  • Flatworms 
  • Dead plant material 
  • Live feeder snails 
  • Crushed snail shells

Assassin snails can also scavenge on fish food that gets down to the bottom of the tank.

Also Read:
Why Are My Fish Turning White?

Apart from proteins, you should ensure you have enough supply of calcium to keep their shell strong and in good health. 

Rabbit Snails 

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Rabbit snails are social and curious creatures that can make a good fit for your aquarium tank. Most aquarists add snails to their aquarium tank to help in tank cleaning. But the Rabbit snail (genus Tylomelania) is welcomed for somewhat different reasons.

Unlike most snails which are active at night, rabbit snails are active during the day. You will spot them grazing and moving across different parts of the aquarium.

These creatures also stand out because of their boldness and curiosity, a notch above other aquatic tank animals.  

Snail Types

Rabbit snails thrive in warm, freshwater bodies. There are over 50 species of the (genus Tylomelania) that scientists are yet to distinguish as individual species. However, a few known types of rabbit snails include.

  • White-spotted rabbit snails
  • Giant Sulawesi rabbit snails
  • Rabbit snails differentiated by their color – Red, black, orange, gold, or dark chocolate

All rabbit snail types have similar physical characteristics except for the color difference.

Body Features 

Rabbit snails are dry and look wrinkly, making them earn the name Elephant snails. Their two dropping antennae resemble rabbit ears.

They have a downward-facing mouth that makes it easy to pick food pieces from the substrate.

A rabbit snail’s shell is medium to large, conical-shaped with a spiral pattern. The iconic shells typically exhibit a delineated pattern spiraling across the entire shell— a sign of good health.

Additionally, the snail’s shell has an oval-shaped aperture containing an operculum it uses for defense.


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Contrary to the snails mentioned above, rabbit snails’ breeding occurs slowly. Rabbit snails give birth to a couple of babies at once.

Their breeding cycle starts after an interval of every four to six weeks. This makes it easier to manage their population than snails that lay several eggs at once.

These snails typically breed when the water is warm. The male rabbit snails produce spermatozoa and pass them over to the females. The females keep the male’s sperm in their brood pouch to internally fertilize their eggs.

The rabbit snails’ egg is gelatinous and resembles a small pearl. Their young ones emerge from the eggs after a short interval.

They are usually fully formed and start moving around the aquarium tank, searching for food. While female eggs carry one embryo at a time, they may occasionally give birth to twins or triplets.


Common with freshwater snails, rabbit snail size changes with their age. Juvenile rabbit snails range between 1 and 2 inches but can grow in length to 3-5 inches. The older the rabbit snail, the longer its size will be.

Life Span 

The lifespan of rabbit snails in captivity is 1-3 years. Their length of life in the aquarium varies depending on the quality of life conditions you provide for them.

A poorly maintained aquarium puts them under stress and limits their life longevity. Spacious set-ups with quality water and diet are of the essence.

Behavior and Temperament

Though slow in movement, rabbit snails are active creatures. These snails are daytime grazers that utilize every part of the aquarium tank burrowing through the substrate. They are peaceful and social creatures that exhibit great curiosity and an outgoing personality.

Rabbit snails move about in a jerky fashion, almost appearing to be dragging their shell behind them. The snails will cluster together during feeding but get back inside the shell during sleep.

When tired, they will rest motionless at the bottom of the aquarium tank; this should be no cause for alarm.

Rabbit Snail Care 

Caring for your rabbit snails in captivity is vital and involves the following.

Rabbit Snails Per Gallon

A bigger tank is always better than a small one when keeping rabbit snails. Avoid going for small-sized tanks even when tempted to.

Ideally, twenty gallons of the tank volume is good enough for two snails, but thirty gallons is ideal. Any tank shape could work as long as you ensure it’s big enough.

Rabbit Snail Tank Set-Up

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Rabbit snails are not fussy about their habitat and can withstand all environments. But if you can ensure the tank set up mimics their natural environment, the easier it will be to raise them.

To start, ensure a fine sand substrate at the bottom of the tank. These snails love to burrow, covering their entire bodies with sand. 

Rabbit snail’s natural environment is filled with lush vegetation, something you also want to mimic in your aquarium tank. Grow a wide variety of these plants in the aquarium. They also help supplement the snails’ diet. 

We don’t advise planting Java ferns in your aquarium unless you feel your snails are malnourished.

You also want to ensure the aquarium water is fresh and free of ammonia and nitrates. Preferably, use a water cycling system that gets rid of excessive ammonia and nitrates in the tank. 

Have a strong lid for covering your aquarium to prevent rabbit snails from moving out of the aquarium tank, given their curiosity.

Recommended Water Parameters

  • Water temperature: (20-30) degrees celsius 
  • pH: 7.3 -8.5 
  • Carbonate hardness (°KH): 5
  • Water hardness (dKH): 2- 15 

Turbo Snail Tank Mates

Rabbit snails are peaceful creatures, and that only means one thing— they will do well with other peaceful creatures. Here are some tank mates for your rabbit snails. 

  • Congo Tetra 
  • Guppies 
  • Honey Gourami 
  • Otocinclus 
  • Sparkling Gourami 
  • Pearl Gourami
  • Amano shrimp 
  • Celestial Pearl Danio 

Rabbit Snail Feeding 

broccolliRabbits snails are explorers by nature and will spend their time roaming around the tank for food. They have a penchant for eating soft algae and will also consume dead plant matter found at the tank’s bottom.

That said, you shouldn’t relax in providing them with food supplements. Include calcium in their diet to strengthen and maintain their shells.

Other items you want to include are the following. 

  • Sinking pellets 
  • Blanched broccoli and spinach 

Ramshorn Snails

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Ramshorn snails, also called ram’s horn snails, are cool and reserved creatures that you can enjoy watching without getting your eyes off them.

They are freshwater snails actively involved in finding algae as they move around the tank. When you get used to them, you will never want them to be missing in your tank.

Ramshorn Snail Types

Unlike most snails, which are found in oceans and seas, Ramshorn snails are freshwater snails found around lakes, ponds, and slow-flowing rivers.

The most common species that you will find in aquaria include:

  • Planorbarius corneus
  • Planorbella duryi

Both of them belong to the planorbidae family. However, the Columbian Ramshorn (Marisa cornuarietis) belongs to the Ampullariidae family.

Body Features

These snails have planispiral shells with a flat coil similar to a ram’s horn or a coiled rope.

Some of these snails have black-colored skin, while others are red. The red ones lack melanin (dark pigment) in their skin.

Also Read:
Aquarium Plants Turning To Mush: How To Fix

There are rare breed species that have blue and pale skin colors.

The shell color of Ramshorn snails varies significantly, with dark and light brown being more common.

Nevertheless, some have spotted shells.

Ramshorn Snail Breeding

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Ramshorn snails breed profusely because they are hermaphroditic, reproducing both by mating and hermaphroditical means.

Ramshorn snails start reproducing shortly after being introduced into the tank. They are not choosy on water conditions and will produce rapidly provided they are well fed.

The snails lay brownish-colored eggs in globules that hatch in 2 to 5 weeks. These globules are made up of about 12 eggs and are translucent— you can see the snail offspring growing.

A gelatinous material covers the eggs for protection. New larvae bury themselves in the tank substrate and only come out at night to feed.

The larvae become mature for reproduction after a couple of months.


The size of Ramshorn snails is about 1.4 inches in diameter, with the height varying between 0.2-2.4 inches. They weigh up to 8 grams.

Life Span

The average life of a Ramshorn snail is roughly about one year, but they can live longer than that. In some incidents, these snails live for up to 3 years when provided with optimal water conditions.

Even though Ramshorn snails are hardy creatures, they require stable living conditions— quality feed being the topmost requirement.

Also Read:
How Long Does It Take For Betta Bulbs To Grow

Unfortunately, freshwater snails die within a short time when you transfer them from their natural habitat to a tank.

It is advisable to buy them from professional breeders.

Behaviour And Temperament

Ramshorn snails are peaceful and reserved creatures and are never in conflict with others who share the same habitat.

You will only find them being actively involved in finding food for themselves.

These snails are active both at night and during day time. You will find them hanging on plant leaves or climbing the glass walls of the tank.

They love feeding in groups and seem to send signals to each other regarding where food is so that they can share. 

Ramshorn Snail Care

It is easy to take care of Ramshorn snails because they are hardy and highly flexible creatures. They quickly adapt to different environments.

Some action points to provide them with a conducive habitat for survival include the following:

How Many Ramshorn Snails Per Gallon?

A 10-gallon tank should be occupied by 1 or 2 ramshorn snails. The smallest tank that one snail can occupy must hold at least 5 gallons.

Ramshorn Snail Tank Setup

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Ensure your tank has fine sand to help create a smooth substrate for your Ramshorn snails. Sand substrate is also safe for your tank fish.

You could plant some live plants in the aquarium tank. These come in handy when the snails have less to eat. However, your live plants shouldn’t be their primary food source.

Also Read:
High Ammonia Levels After Changing Water In Fish Tank

Keep the water in the aquarium slow-moving— an air-water pump is not required.

Implant rocks and decorations like bogwood to provide your snails with surfaces they can climb on.

Low oxygen levels work fine for Ramshorn snails but could be a problem for fish. Keep the supply well balanced.

Recommended Water Parameters

  • pH: 70 -8.0 
  • Water: (18-26) degrees Celsius 
  • Specific Gravity: 1.023 – 1.025 
  • Water hardiness: dKH 7-12 
  • Calcium level: 350 -450ppm

Important Care Tips

  • Keep the water free from copper because it is toxic.
  • Acidic water is corrosive and can eat their shells away. Keep the water slightly basic.
  • Monitor and keep nitrites and ammonia to bare minimum concentrations.
  • If there are fish in the aquarium, keep their health in check to prevent them from infecting the snails.

Ramshorn Snail Tank Mates

Since Ramshorn snails are friendly and peaceful, they pose no risk when coexisting with other fish or creatures. Just ensure that they are not predatory to the snails.

Also Read:
How To Get Rid Of Snail Eggs In Garden And Aquarium?

Some of the ideal tank mates for Ramshorn snails include:

  • Livebearers
  • Gourami
  • Small Shrimp
  • Tetras
  • Danios
  • Rasboras

Ramshorn Snail Feeding

lettuceRamshorn snails do a thorough job of cleaning tanks by eating leftover food, decaying and dead plant matter, soft algae, debris, fish waste, and detritus. These substances usually build up on hard surfaces in the tank.

If need be, you can supplement your snails’ diet by providing them with commercial feeds such as:

  • Fish flakes
  • Pellets
  • Cucumbers
  • Lettuce.
  • Calcium fish supplements (Ideal for their shells) 

Astrea Snails 

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Astrea snails (Astraea Tecta) also form part of your aquarium cleaning team. The snails feed on detritus, diatoms, cyanobacteria, and algae found in the tank.

Due to their small size, these gastropods easily maneuver through the crannies and nooks that other algae eaters and fish cannot reach. Interestingly, Astrea snails also clean the aquarium glass from inside.

This is a unique characteristic you will rarely spot in other snails.

Astrea Snail Types

There is only one type of Astrea snail called the Astraea Turbo SnailIt is characterized by a huge algae appetite and has a pyramid-like shell.

Some Astrea snails have a star-like outline giving them the name Astraea Conehead Snail or Astraea Star Snail.

Body Features

Astrea snails are characterized by an elevated, thick, and broad conical shell with numerous conspicuous spikes. The tiny spikes protrude from the shell in a spiral form.

These tiny projections on the shell give its outline a star-like shape.

Astrea snails are reddish-orange, with olivaceous and whitish marks in some places. The shell’s base is almost flat.

Their bodies also feature an operculum or trapdoor that covers them when hiding inside the shell.

Astrea Snail Breeding

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Breeding of Astrea snails takes place in aquariums with both gender types.

The females spawn for 5-10 minutes, depositing eggs on a flat surface in clusters, while males release the milt straight into the water, turning it whitish.

Females release up to a million eggs, but few survive because of a high mortality rate.

The eggs hatch into larvae within 12 -24 hours after fertilization. The larvae emerge as free-swimming veligers, a stage that lasts 3-5 days.

Once past this stage, the larvae will find a place to rest on the reef substrate and begin feeding on algae films. The larvae metamorphose into the crawling stage from the sixth to the eighth day.

Saline levels lower than 30% don’t favor Astrea snail breeding.


Astrea snails are tiny and range between 0.4 and 2.4 inches. However, most of them fall between 0.8 to 1.6 inches.


The lifespan of Astrea snails is around 3-5 years in captivity. They reach their reproductive maturity at the age of 6-8 months.  

Behavior and Temperament

Astrea snails are solitary, non-aggressive, and docile. They love a peaceful aquatic environment and coexist seamlessly with other creatures of similar nature.

Never will you find Astrea snails in chaotic confrontations with their neighbors because they do not have any means of attacking other creatures.

They are nocturnal, thus active at night. You will realize that Astrea snails start their activities at dusk and gradually slow down until they finally stop before or at dawn.

However, smaller snails are more active and make longer and more intense movements than larger snails.

A major reason why Astrea snails become active at night is to avoid confronting predators. It becomes safe for them to graze and move around without being detected.

Also Read:
How To Get Rid Of Snail Poop In Aquarium

What’s more, dusk is prime time when algae have maximum nutrients. Therefore, it is more nutritious and beneficial to the snails when they eat them at night.

Remember that if Astrea snails turn upside down, they cannot turn upright again, and you got to help them.

Astrea Snail Care

There are factors that you need to consider when you are rearing Astrea snails in an aquarium because the aquarium is not their natural habitat.

You want to replicate the exact natural environment they inhabit. Below are some factors you need to keep in mind:

Astrea Snails Per Gallon

The general rule for keeping Astrea snails in an aquarium is one snail per 5-10 gallons.

Astrea snails need ample space so that they do not exhaust their food resources within a short period.

Astrea Snail Tank Setup

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Astrea snails are typically easy to care for, and novice aquarists should find keeping them a breeze.

  • The tank must have a strong current, but lighting is not required because of their nocturnal nature.
  • The availability of algae is vital since the snails are heavy feeders and can eat up large patches quickly.
  • You should recycle the water regularly to keep it clean and free of ammonia and nitrates.

Recommended Water Parameters

  • pH: 8.0 -8.4 
  • Water: (22-24) degrees Celsius 
  • Specific Gravity: 1.023 – 1.025 
  • Water hardiness: dKH 7-12 
  • Calcium level: 350 -450ppm

Astrea Snail Tank Mates

Astrea snails are friendly and harmless to other creatures that share the same habitat. Their potential tank mates include:

  • Snails: Trochus, Bumblebee, Mexican Turbo snails, Cerith snails
  • Shrimps: Skunk cleaner, Red Fire shrimp, Peppermint shrimp

However, avoid keeping fish species that compete for food, like tang fish.

Also, avoid species like triggerfish, which are predators.

Astrea Snail Feeding

Source | seaweed &algae pellets

Astrea snail is herbivorous and feeds on microscopic algae found on corals and rocks using their radula.

Since they are also scavengers, they eat leftover fish food, shrimp, pellets, pills, flakes, and Spirulina.

You can also provide them with additional feeds such as:

  • Algae pellets
  • Herbivore pellets
  • Calcium supplements 


Rearing snails can be an uphill task. However, having the correct information sets you up for early success.

Take your time to learn about each snail and its type in detail.

Seek to know their characteristics ranging from appearance, behavior, life span, diet, and how you can take good care of them for longevity.

More importantly, ensure you meet the threshold of the number of snails required per gallon for each snail type or species.

Beginners can kick start an aquarium with low-maintenance snails, such as the Trochus.

We hope both novice and veteran aquarists will have something to learn from this comprehensive guide

How Many Snails Per Gallon- Mystery, Nerite, Turbo, Nassarius, Trochus, Trumpet

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