Do Snails Float When Alive?

AquaticQueen

Member
I recently added a black mystery snail to my 10g tank, but when I tried to feed him a blanched pea, the other fish started eating it before he could get anywhere near it.
I knew he would starve if I left him in the 10g so I moved him to a 1g ish container. He has been moving around and doing his regular snail things up until today when just about, idk, 30 minutes ago I noticed him floating in the middle of the container. His shell is still dark colored and he doesn't smell so I don't think he's dead.
Is this normal behavior?
 

Ssnaaiil

Member
My snails float around every now and then. It could have some air trapped in its shell or sometimes they do it when they don’t feel good. I would put him in something with at least 5 gallons. 1g is way too small. It could be too much ammonia and is making him feel unwell and for feeding him in the 10 gallon you could try dropping some veggies in the tank after the light has been out for an hour or two so that he has overnight to eat
 

fjh

Member
Snails will absolutely float around when they are alive. If you think he might be dead, pick him up, smell him, and give him a shake.

However I agree with Ssnaaiil. I would put him back in the 10g tank with the fish. He really needs filtration and he will be happier in a larger area. Maybe skewer a peice of blanched broccoli or zucchini and put it in the tank. That way even if the other fish are interested, there will still be plenty for your snail and you wont foul up your water.
 

bumblinBee

Member
I think it depends on the snail. Many people have told me that their snails exhibit this behaviour—that they will float to the surface and eventually will crawl their way back down again. However, the only time my mystery snails ever did this behaviour was right before they died. And it only happened to me on one occasion.
He must have gotten air trapped in his lung and unfortunately, there was nothing I could do for him. If I were you I would keep a very close eye on him, do a smell test every few hours. And as others have stated, I would definitely return him to the 10g. You'd be surprised by how much microbial life is within your aquarium, I really don't think he would have starved, especially if you have live plants in the aquarium. Obviously you should still feed him, but my mysteries got by with just one supplemental slice of zuchinni a week and they were all fine.
 
  • Thread Starter

AquaticQueen

Member
Ssnaaiil said:
My snails float around every now and then. It could have some air trapped in its shell or sometimes they do it when they don’t feel good. I would put him in something with at least 5 gallons. 1g is way too small. It could be too much ammonia and is making him feel unwell and for feeding him in the 10 gallon you could try dropping some veggies in the tank after the light has been out for an hour or two so that he has overnight to eat
Thanks for responding! It's good to know he isn't dead.
Like I mentioned, the 1g container is only temporary until I figured things out. I had been doing 50-60% daily water changes on it.
I will definitely put him back in the tank tonight.
fjh said:
Snails will absolutely float around when they are alive. If you think he might be dead, pick him up, smell him, and give him a shake.

However I agree with Ssnaaiil. I would put him back in the 10g tank with the fish. He really needs filtration and he will be happier in a larger area. Maybe skewer a peice of blanched broccoli or zucchini and put it in the tank. That way even if the other fish are interested, there will still be plenty for your snail and you wont foul up your water.
I'll try that. Thanks!
bumblinBee said:
I think it depends on the snail. Many people have told me that their snails exhibit this behaviour—that they will float to the surface and eventually will crawl their way back down again. However, the only time my mystery snails ever did this behaviour was right before they died. And it only happened to me on one occasion.
He must have gotten air trapped in his lung and unfortunately, there was nothing I could do for him. If I were you I would keep a very close eye on him, do a smell test every few hours. And as others have stated, I would definitely return him to the 10g. You'd be surprised by how much microbial life is within your aquarium, I really don't think he would have starved, especially if you have live plants in the aquarium. Obviously you should still feed him, but my mysteries got by with just one supplemental slice of zuchinni a week and they were all fine.
Sorry about your snail :(
I will put him back in the 10g tonight and feed him some blanched broccoli.
 
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