How to get rid of pest snails?

Itserikkaaa

Hello! So I bought a hornwort plant for my guppy fry to hide in and within like two weeks I found some bladder snails. At first I thought whatever, I like snails, they are cute and I did have some algae which they definitely got rid of,the problem is now there are like hundreds of them.I wouldn't mind them in small numbers but it's way out of control now. I will try feeding less but my five guppies eat a lot and I never notice any uneaten food. I got an assassin snail today so hopefully that helps. But my question is this. Ive read that you can trap them with lettuce or manually remove them, but nowhere does it say what to do with them afterwards. Do you just throw them out?? I just feel like it's so mean and that they would suffer i so I thought that an assassin snail would be more humane cause it's just the circle of life. Is there another way to humanely kill them so they don't suffer?What do I do with them if I just pick them out?? Please help! Thank you!
 

NoahLikesFish

CRUSH THEM WITH YOUR HANDS DONT LET THEM LIVE or just be a casual and raise the salinity, that’s the only thing that kills them easily besides pinching. Guppies like brackish water too!
 
Upvote 0

Itserikkaaa

CRUSH THEM WITH YOUR HANDS DONT LET THEM LIVE or just be a casual and raise the salinity, that’s the only thing that kills them easily besides pinching. Guppies like brackish water too!
BUT I FEEL TOO BAD TO DO THAT! I feel like it's so mean!!!haha and true maybe I will do that. I will just have to learn how to maintain it. Wouldn't the assassin snail die though?
 
Upvote 0

NoahLikesFish

It’s painless, they don’t feel pain it’s basically just deleting them from the universe
 
Upvote 0

Willj626

If you have the space you could get something like a puffer to eat the snails, but that is adding a whole new fish to take care of. Clove oil is a humane way to euthanize and can be purchased from the drug store, it's like putting them to a nice long sleep and supposed to be very painless for them. Snails are very sensitive to copper as well so you could remove them and place them in a container dosed with ick guard medicine that contains copper. Just be mindful to not kill them in your guppies tank and to remove the shells your assassin snail leaves behind to avoid an ammonia spike. Hope this helps! +also bladder snails are most active at night to that's when your best chance for manual removal is!
 
Upvote 0

NoahLikesFish

You could put the assassin snail in a cup with tank water and then put a penny in the tank for copper, clove oil is a waste of money because it’s just as painless as blunt trauma
 
Upvote 0

Itserikkaaa

You could put the assassin snail in a cup with tank water and then put a penny in the tank for copper, clove oil is a waste of money because it’s just as painless as blunt trauma
And that would just kill them pretty fast without hurting the guppies?
 
Upvote 0

NoahLikesFish

You prob would have to return the assassin snail. Just do it manual or just wait for the snail to kill em it should take a month at most
 
Upvote 0

Itserikkaaa

You prob would have to return the assassin snail. Just do it manual or just wait for the snail to kill em it should take a month at most
maybe Ill just wait a bit and see if the assassin starts eating them. I think I'm too squeamish to manually kill anything myself lol
 
Upvote 0

Willj626

And that would just kill them pretty fast without hurting the guppies?
I would strongly advise you to NOT put coins in your fish tank. One penny would not be enough and by the time you have enough and the copper starts to leach in other dangerous metals and chemicals used in coin making will begin to destroy your aquariums micro-fauna/beneficial bacteria and poison your fish.
 
Upvote 0

smee82

Adding a penny isnt going to do much to get rid of pest snails. Manually remove as much as you see and your assassin snail will take care of the rest.
 
Upvote 0

Chewbacca773

Hello! So I bought a hornwort plant for my guppy fry to hide in and within like two weeks I found some bladder snails. At first I thought whatever, I like snails, they are cute and I did have some algae which they definitely got rid of,the problem is now there are like hundreds of them.I wouldn't mind them in small numbers but it's way out of control now. I will try feeding less but my five guppies eat a lot and I never notice any uneaten food. I got an assassin snail today so hopefully that helps. But my question is this. Ive read that you can trap them with lettuce or manually remove them, but nowhere does it say what to do with them afterwards. Do you just throw them out?? I just feel like it's so mean and that they would suffer i so I thought that an assassin snail would be more humane cause it's just the circle of life. Is there another way to humanely kill them so they don't suffer?What do I do with them if I just pick them out?? Please help! Thank you!
Depending on how big your tank is, having 100’s of snails may mean your tank is very imbalanced. The snails can only reproduce when there is food and the means to. Maybe you have too many nutrients in your tank and that is the reason the are multiplying so much. If you don’t have a problem with them, if your tank is balanced it is possible to keep them without 100’s of them.
 
Upvote 0

Fisch

You prob would have to return the assassin snail. Just do it manual or just wait for the snail to kill em it should take a month at most
One Assassin snail won't be able to control a bladder snail invasion. The copper penny is an interesting idea, I am curious how that may work.
 
Upvote 0

Willj626

One Assassin snail won't be able to control a bladder snail invasion. The copper penny is an interesting idea, I am curious how that may work.
Pennies are really not a great idea, coins (especially those with copper) can have devastating effects on an aquatic ecosystem. A lot of the beneficial bacteria and microfauna in water is extremely sensitive to copper and other metals from coins. This is something we've looked at at the DEC and have seen how devastating they can be- these were cases in fast moving water sources and the effects were bad, I can only imagine how much worse they would be in a small closed system like an aquarium.
 
Upvote 0

JettsPapa

BUT I FEEL TOO BAD TO DO THAT! I feel like it's so mean!!!haha and true maybe I will do that. I will just have to learn how to maintain it. Wouldn't the assassin snail die though?

Get you some shrimp, and crush several snails each day in the shrimp tank. Shrimp just love fresh snail meat. Then tell yourself you aren't killing snails, you're feeding your shrimp.
 
Upvote 0

Fisch

Pennies are really not a great idea, coins (especially those with copper) can have devastating effects on an aquatic ecosystem. A lot of the beneficial bacteria and microfauna in water is extremely sensitive to copper and other metals from coins. This is something we've looked at at the DEC and have seen how devastating they can be- these were cases in fast moving water sources and the effects were bad, I can only imagine how much worse they would be in a small closed system like an aquarium.
Interesting...what is DEC?
 
Upvote 0

JettsPapa

Interesting...what is DEC?

A quick Google search led me to Wikipedia, which posted a list of organizations using that acronym. Combining the possibilities on that list, the context, and the fact that Willj626 is from New York leads me to assume it's the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation.
 
Upvote 0

Willj626

Interesting...what is DEC?
The Department of Environmental Conservation.
A quick Google search led me to Wikipedia, which posted a list of organizations using that acronym. Combining the possibilities on that list, the context, and the fact that Willj626 is from New York leads me to assume it's the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation.
Yup, I work for them. I actually work on the aquatic side of things- mostly conservation and invasive species prevention.
 
Upvote 0

Fisch

A quick Google search led me to Wikipedia, which posted a list of organizations using that acronym. Combining the possibilities on that list, the context, and the fact that Willj626 is from New York leads me to assume it's the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation.
Thank you for the investigation!!!
 
Upvote 0

JettsPapa

The Department of Environmental Conservation.

Yup, I work for them. I actually work on the aquatic side of things- mostly conservation and invasive species prevention.

That sounds like an interesting job.
 
Upvote 0

Willj626

That sounds like an interesting job.
Lets just say I spent a minimum of 40 hours every week in a different lake this summer. Although this is getting off topic so I apologize OP.
+coins and solid copper are a really bad idea for aquatic systems so I would not put pennies in your tanks. Sure you'll kill snails but you will crash your cycle, slowly starve and poison your fish (extensive exposure to copper will harm fishes sense of smell and food drive permanently), also fish offspring exposed to copper are far more likely to be deformed- which would be especially bad in OP's case with guppies. So, there have been a lot of other suggestions shared which are safe and humane that should be explored- however a penny is not a safe solution to your problems.
 
Upvote 0

Chanyi

What has worked for me (a little gruesome, sorry)

Remove any livestock you want to keep and place in a bucket with the filters running in that bucket.

Perform a 100% water change with COLD water, colder the better. 100% eradication of un-invited snails.

EDIT: I would remove any heaters as well to avoid shocking the hot heater glass with cold water. Let the heaters cool completely before adding them to the tank to re-heat for adding livestock / filters back on the tank.
 
Upvote 0

mattgirl

The quickest way I've found for killing snails after pulling them from the tank is plain table salt. As far as I can tell it instantly kills them and then they can be disposed of. Sometimes we have to do distasteful things. This is definitely one of the distasteful things.

Put a piece of lettuce in a low sided container in the tank just after lights out. In the morning pull the snail filled container out of the tank. By putting the lettuce in a container the snails won't be able to let go and fall back into the tank.

Your assassin can help but keep in mind. They only kill to eat. The bladder snails will breed much faster than the assassin can eat them so you will have to help the little guy out by removing as many as you can.
 
Upvote 0

Fisch

The quickest way I've found for killing snails after pulling them from the tank is plain table salt. As far as I can tell it instantly kills them and then they can be disposed of. Sometimes we have to do distasteful things. This is definitely one of the distasteful things.

Put a piece of lettuce in a low sided container in the tank just after lights out. In the morning pull the snail filled container out of the tank. By putting the lettuce in a container the snails won't be able to let go and fall back into the tank.

Your assassin can help but keep in mind. They only kill to eat. The bladder snails will breed much faster than the assassin can eat them so you will have to help the little guy out by removing as many as you can.
Any amount of table salt? I will try that...as I am sick of crunching them.
 
Upvote 0

Fisch

Lets just say I spent a minimum of 40 hours every week in a different lake this summer. Although this is getting off topic so I apologize OP.
+coins and solid copper are a really bad idea for aquatic systems so I would not put pennies in your tanks. Sure you'll kill snails but you will crash your cycle, slowly starve and poison your fish (extensive exposure to copper will harm fishes sense of smell and food drive permanently), also fish offspring exposed to copper are far more likely to be deformed- which would be especially bad in OP's case with guppies. So, there have been a lot of other suggestions shared which are safe and humane that should be explored- however a penny is not a safe solution to your problems.
Sorry to deviate, just out of curiosity...what about lead?
 
Upvote 0

mattgirl

Any amount of table salt? I will try that...as I am sick of crunching them.
I would just put the ones I picked out that day in a small container with a tiny bit of water in it. I would then just sprinkle the salt on them. I didn't measure but probably used at least a teaspoon full. I wanted to make sure there was enough to get the job done quickly. I wanted them gone but wanted it done as quick as possible.
 
Upvote 0

Willj626

Sorry to deviate, just out of curiosity...what about lead?
Lead is a bit trickier, its a very common and plentiful element that is naturally found in soils so the average exposure for fish and plants normally is of no affect- a lot of aquatic plants will store lead in their roots. Naturally present lead is very "immobile" in the water column but when its been processed for human use is when it can start having negative affects. Lead is toxic because it accumulates in your body- that being said the larger the animal the more opportunity to store lead and see the negatives. So unless you eat your aquarium fish lead in a tank is not a huge deal- although lead will leech/dissolve in soft water which can be a problem for your tank inhabitants. I assume though that maybe you're asking because of lead weights? If that's the case, I don't believe plant weights are made out of lead anymore so there's not much worry there- even if they were most solid lead should be inert enough (unless you have soft water) to be in a tank worry free for a period of time. For fishermen on here they might remember around 2010 when lead fishing weights came under some real scrutiny for their environmental impacts-lead is pretty much a death sentence for aquatic birds like ducks.
 
Upvote 0

Fisch

Lead is a bit trickier, its a very common and plentiful element that is naturally found in soils so the average exposure for fish and plants normally is of no affect- a lot of aquatic plants will store lead in their roots. Naturally present lead is very "immobile" in the water column but when its been processed for human use is when it can start having negative affects. Lead is toxic because it accumulates in your body- that being said the larger the animal the more opportunity to store lead and see the negatives. So unless you eat your aquarium fish lead in a tank is not a huge deal- although lead will leech/dissolve in soft water which can be a problem for your tank inhabitants. I assume though that maybe you're asking because of lead weights? If that's the case, I don't believe plant weights are made out of lead anymore so there's not much worry there- even if they were most solid lead should be inert enough (unless you have soft water) to be in a tank worry free for a period of time. For fishermen on here they might remember around 2010 when lead fishing weights came under some real scrutiny for their environmental impacts-lead is pretty much a death sentence for aquatic birds like ducks.
Interesting, thank you for the info. I believe a lot of the plant weights are still lead, and I was wondering.
 
Upvote 0

Willj626

Interesting, thank you for the info. I believe a lot of the plant weights are still lead, and I was wondering.
Really? I was looking online and most all the products I found said zinc or magnesium, the ones that did have lead said it was not the primary material used (most cited zinc).
 
Upvote 0

shrimplypibbles

i plan on making a snail trap, once they are all in I think I will just put it in the freezer for a few days. That seems fairly humane to me.
 
Upvote 0

Similar Aquarium Threads

  • Question
  • Evercrisp
  • Snails
Replies
2
Views
112
JLAquatics
Replies
6
Views
64
Eaton
  • Question
  • grrushgirl
  • Snails
Replies
12
Views
330
Charlie’s Dad
  • Question
  • TopHatMan215
  • Snails
Replies
1
Views
138
BigManAquatics
Replies
1
Views
136
LoachWhisperer

Random Great Thread

New Snail Threads

Latest Aquarium Threads

Top Bottom