Ramshorn shell changing colors?

Discussion in 'Snails' started by Ziggi, Jan 9, 2013.

  1. ZiggiWell Known MemberMember

    I've noticed my larger Ramshorns shells have changed from dark brown to white. Icant tell you a time frame, too many snails to keep track of :p

    Is that like greying hair - a sign of age? or something else?

  2. monkeypie102Well Known MemberMember

    That's bad... their shells are detirorating (spelling) from either low Ph or lack of calcium in their diet... you need to feed zuccini, and spinach and buy a cuttlebone and add it to your filter (can also use clean egg shells) sorry this is a simple and fast answer I am about to head to work :)
  3. ZiggiWell Known MemberMember

    I was wondering, it looked like acid erosion but that's kind of weird, my pH is 7.6 (just tested) and I have the old shells of the dearly departed still in the tank (I read it's good to leave them in there for that very reason) :(
    So if I use the clean egg shells, I'm guestimating I should remove that inner "skin" layer that's between the egg and the hard shell? any other prep needed?
  4. matsungitWell Known MemberMember

    You can also use Calcium Chloride or Calcium Hydroxide available at your local Reef store. Unlike cuttlebone or eggshells, these additives are in a readily water soluble form. Be careful and watch ph though.
  5. ZiggiWell Known MemberMember

    k, should I be testing my calcium levels in my tanks? If this is a problem for my Ramshorn, I'm sure it's a problem for my assassins, yes?
    Would low calcium effect fish or plants?
  6. matsungitWell Known MemberMember

    With extremely high Calcium you would notice calcium precipitation outside the tank on the rim and lid. And you would have high GH as well. Calcium is used by fish just like we do. And they get calcium deficiency just like we do too. For me, I just put 10-20ml for my 60gal (way way below what a reef would be at) per week and I don't have much precipitation but I have high GH. High GH inhibits breeding but my mollys are having babies fine. Just like you I had ramshorns that turned white but since I used Calcium Chloride the problem seems to have gone away.
  7. ZiggiWell Known MemberMember

    hmmm, maybe I should test then, my old tanks had a TON of build-up (one was white, I thought it was like ... crystaline salt deposit or something, the other was brownish whiteish....-ish color :rolleyes: lovely description, I know!) only a few of the ramshorn had white on their shells ... and it was only a little at that. I switched tanks around in November I think it was.

    So since this is a 10 gal tank ... :p I'd be using ... what ... like .2 ml?

    It's just weird ... I haven't noticed the white/deterioration on any of the ramshorn in my other tanks (they dont really live all that long in those tanks though, thanks to the assassins). Is this weird? I guess I'm shocked there's a calcium deficiency in a tank with empty shells hanging out and a mild pH
  8. monkeypie102Well Known MemberMember

    The higher Ph and harder water is better for their shells also I reccomened cuttlebones only because once it has been in the filter for a couple weeks it should be able to sink without needed help and the fish/inverts will eat at it when they need some calcium... I have went through 1 bone in about 6 months I broke it up into 4 pieces...

    As fo the egg yes it needs to be cleaned completely because the egg sac tha is still in the egg can add to h ammonia and cause a mini cycle... some people like t bake the shells til they are brittle... just be careful of burning the shells xD (which is why I stick to cuttlebone plus its only a couple bucks)

    You can also use the liquid calcium though I don't personally... though I do plan to buy some as i just started a saltwater tank and i know calcium will be important...
  9. matsungitWell Known MemberMember

    If they eat the cuttlebone then that would be great. Less problems. Unfortunately, all Calcium test kits are for seawater so you'll never know for sure in a freshwater setting. I've never tried it. You can only guess by GH and KH. Oh, and adding Magnesium (magnesium sulfate or Epsom Salt) will help the water retain more Calcium and you will have less calcium precipitation. Ideally, Magnesium should be 3x that of calcium. On my 60gal, I dose 10ml Calcium Chloride, 2tsp Baking Soda (for KH) and 2tbsp Epsom Salt. This is in addition to 10ml Kent Freshwater Essential (for trace elements). I do this because I use RO water and I don't like our tap. I'm not sure if it's the proper ratio but it seems to work. I dose during 20gal weekly water changes. In the future, I will switch to A+B+C reef formula for adding calcium, carbonates, and magnesium. Maybe I don't even have to add trace since some formulas include them. I've read that Epsom Salt gives rise to undesirable sulfates in the long run. Mag flake (a de-icer) or Magnesium Chloride works better without the sulfates. I've read that chlorides are very high naturally anyway.

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