Why is my Snail Dead?!

  • #1
I have had a fluval edge 6.6 gallon aquarium for about three months now. About two months ago I got a blue mystery snail from Petsmart. Up until about 2 days ago he was eating, moving, and acting normally. Then he suddenly died. His shell was growing at a healthy rate and he didn't have any injuries as far as I could tell. I do use a product with a trace of copper in it, but research told me this product was okay. The thing is I wasn't home when he died. I had been gone for about a day and a half with nobody taking care of the aquarium, but the filter, heater and lights were on and the fish could still eat. He died wedged to the bottom with his little trapdoor thing open. Um, once we took his shell out of the water, the part exposed to air turned dark and that's all I can think of. Please help, I want to know what went wrong before I get another snail!
R.I.P. my beautiful Omnitron.
  • #2
HI mantaray5 welcome to FishLore!

I'm sorry abiut your snail

I don't know a whole lot about snails but when things go wrong the first thing to rule out is your water parameters.
Do you know the readings for ammonia, nitrite and nitrate?

If you could fill in your aquarium information completely, it will help the members know your set up at a glance.
It's found under Forum Actions at the top of the page then click Edit Profile.

What is your cleaning routine?

Good luck!
Wendy Lubianetsky
  • #3
Snail Health

Snails are actually very sensative to any changes in the water conditions at all. So, as Lucy asked, could we get some water readings (ammonia, nitrite and nitrate) from the water. If you don't have a kit, take some water to the local pet store and have them test it for you. They are usually very helpful when it comes to that. Talk to you soon I hope.arty0011:

  • #4
Welcome to FishLore! Sorry it wasn't under better circumstance.

Your aquarium profile says that you do not know about the nitrogen cycle. Please read up on it (the words should be a link to an article about it). Once you understand the nitrogen cycle, you may find that your snail died from ammonia posioning.
  • #5
after 3 months....it should have been cycled...but that doesn't mean it was. were you changing the filter media? as in throwing it away? because if so, that would cause a minI cycle each time. and the snail probably just couldn't handle it. what else do you have in it?

imo, a 6 gallon isn't big enough for a mystery snail anyway. they are pretty big waste producers, and can reach golf ball size.

but are you sure he was dead? snails bodies disappear pretty quickly after they die. they are made of a lot of water. after a day and a half....his body should have been a lot smaller, or almost gone from the shell. though I guess it would depend on if he died right when you left....or a couple hours before you got home. snails do curl up and sleep however. was he on his back? that's a good indicator of death. and if it smelled really bad when you took him out...probably dead.

but I guess since you took him out, he's surely dead now. i'm sorry about that....
  • #6
I didn't think any sort of copper was good for any inverts. Maybe it was the copper that did it, after all?
  • Thread Starter
  • #7

I put in my tank info, but I have more information. First, thank you everybody for the advice. I'm sure the snail was dead when I took him out. First, I use RO water with a calcium supplement and a supplement for shrimp. My betta has picked on my snail before, but I don't think that's what killed him. I will try with the test kit, but I just thought, a month ago or so, I put almost 7 times in the recommended amount of the chemical with copper in it into my tank on accident. How long does copper poisoning take to kill? I do half water changes every two weeks. I also have 3 algae eating shrimp and a betta who have been doing great so far. Are they in any danger? Thanks!
  • #8
I would wait for members with more experience with meds to answer, but that seems like a whole heck of a lot of copper for inverts that are very sensitive to it. My guess is that people will suggest lots of water changes, maybe even multiple back-to-back, to get the copper out. Also, put carbon in your filter if you can (and haven't already). But again, I would wait for more advice I haven't had to medicate anyone (yet)...
  • #9
i'm thinking it might not be the copper, just because the shirmp would have been affected. and since they're still alive, i'm not sure if they would have survived if copper was the issue. maybe he was sick...I mean you just never know. i've had snails die for no reason I could figure out. things happen.
  • #10
Well it is a mystery snail....they have that reputation of just dying. Though, id think it was the copper normally. Possibly it was a really weak concentration, enough to kill the snail but not the shrimp(from experince, the shrimp are still hardier.) Regardless id probably avoid copper in the future and as was stated, mysteries don't really belong in anything less then at least 10 gallons lightly stocked.

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