When Should I Get Nerite Snails?

Discussion in 'Snails' started by cheapcouches, Apr 11, 2017.

  1. cheapcouchesValued MemberMember

    I really want a nerite snail (both for looks and for eating algae), but I'm worried about adding one because there I think there might not be enough algae in the tank. When should I start adding nerite snails, and when I do, how many should I add? I'm thinking about adding only one, so there aren't eggs everywhere...

    Things to note:
    • I have 1 betta in the tank
    • The tank is planted
    • The tank is 4 weeks old
    • I have started seeing algae just this week
  2. Little Tank of HappinessWell Known MemberMember

    I would get 1 and get it when your tank is fully cycled. Is your tank fully cycled? You need to have 0 ammonia, 0 nitrate, and 20 or below nitrate ppm.

  3. fjhWell Known MemberMember

    If the tank is cycled and your betta is doing fine, you can get a snail now if you'd like.

    Nerite snails can't reproduce in fresh water, so you don't have to worry about that if you get more than one ;)

    How large is your tank? Also remember that if you even have to.medicate your betta, usually the medicines aren't intert safe so take your snail out ;)

  4. cheapcouchesValued MemberMember

    My tank is at least partially cycled - I have an ammonia level of 0. I currently do not have a nitrate/nitrite kit, I plan on getting one soon.
    If it helps, I added substrate from an already cycled tank about 2 weeks ago.
  5. fjhWell Known MemberMember

    Is your betta showing any ill effects? If not, then it's probably cycled.
    About 95% of bb lives in your filter, so if you have any extra filter media from a cycled tank that would be better. The other 5 lives in/on decor and substrate so at least you got that much ;)
  6. cheapcouchesValued MemberMember

    My betta is not looking sick at the moment. In fact, I accidentally nipped his fin a couple of weeks ago and he healed and also did not get fin rot, so I guess that's a good sign.
  7. AlhanaValued MemberMember

    I usually tell people to wait until they have a little bit of visible algae, especially for the bigger nerites since they seem to have a huge appetite. Also make sure you have a good secure lid cause they can be escape artists if there isn't a lot of food or if the water quality is not to their liking.
  8. cheapcouchesValued MemberMember


    Are they able to climb upside down? I currently have a lid, but it has an opening in the center. I also have some visible algae in the tank, both on the glass and on some of the cholla wood I have, but I'm not sure if it's enough for the a snail of medium size.
  9. AlhanaValued MemberMember

    Yep they can climb upside down, so I would just make it a habit to put something over that opening. Maybe lay your net over there or set the container of fish food on it. I believe they are more active at night so maybe that would be the time to be more diligent about the hole.

    Edit: You could also look into getting the small horned nerites if they are available in your area. They still eat a TON of algae but since they are smaller it would take them longer plus I haven't really seen them trying to escape the tank like the regular nerites do.
  10. fjhWell Known MemberMember

    They are able to climb upside-down, but usually don't leave the water (will only do this if there is a problem with your water quality)
    Nerites don't eat as much as other snails of the same size, so I think you'll be fine. If once he cleans up your tank you don't think he's eating enough, you could always supplement his diet
  11. el337Fishlore LegendMember

    Nerite snails also munch on biofilm so I don't think you need to worry about having enough algae for them.

    I'd make sure to get the nitrite/nitrate tests to make sure you're cycled before adding anything else. Snails will definitely try to leave the tank due to poor water quality.

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