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Rule of thumb?
06-20-2007, 01:09 PM,
Rule of thumb?
Well I know very little about snails. I was wondering I have a saltwater reef setup. I wanted to add some snail in my system well I live on the beach they are always near the mangroves in my back yard.

well here is my question.

Is there a rule of thumb in shape or color that would tell me if they are algee eaters or if they are venimus wich I don't want to add my mistake to my tank?

Well thanks for the help


06-22-2007, 01:55 PM,
Rule of thumb?
Hi Roger,

There is really no general rule of thumb.  It's kind of like venomous snakes - you just have to know what the dangerous ones look like.  All the really dangerous snails, those which could hurt you or kill aquarium fish (and there are only a few of them) are members of a family called Cone Shells. You can see a picture of the most dangerous cone shell species here:

<a href="" target="_blank"><!-- m --><a class="postlink" href=""> ... cones.html</a><!-- m --></a>

These all live in the western to southwestern Pacific area. You are not likely to find them in mangrove habitats.  There are many other species of cone shells that are not dangerous.

In mangrove areas you can find some snails that are algae eaters, and others that feed on molluscs, worms, and other invertebrates. Also, some that are scavengers, feeding on dead fish or other dead organisms.

Probably the easiest way to identify the algae eaters is to observe them in their natural habitat.  You can identify the scavengers by throwing a piece of fish or a crushed oyster in the water and coming back a half hour later to see what is eating it.  The species that live high on the mangrove roots are most likely algae eaters.
06-23-2007, 10:38 AM,
Rule of thumb?

The main problem of keeping snails if the feeding part of the deal... To keep them alive you need top know their feeding habits. Molluscs may live for months without feeding... I kept alive cowries and Cone shells but in both cases I found their preys (yellow sponges for <i>Cypraea lurida </i>and fire worm for <i>Conus regius </i>and <i>Conus dominicanus</i>) ! The thing to have in mind is more you have animals in your tank, more it will unstable... try to avoid fishes and of course shell killers (lobsters, murex....).
It was really great to host live shells in my water tanks. You can learn many things from these snails habbits ! And make nice pictures.

DAVID <img src="images/smiley/roi.gif" alt="" border="0" />  <span class="petit">--Last edited by David Touitou on 2007-06-23 14:41:31 --</span>

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