Will A Betta Overeat Pond Snails?

Discussion in 'Betta Fish' started by tellin, Apr 10, 2018.

  1. tellin Valued Member Member

    My son has a betta in a 5 gallon tank, and we have been doing a fishless cycle of a 29 gallon. The 29 gallon is lightly planted and had a bit of algae. Fortunately, some pond snails hitchhiked on the plants and ate every bit of algae! This resulted in a bloom of about a dozen "big" snails (2mm length) and many baby snails. However the population is not increasing, probably due to the lack of food.

    The 5 gallon is planted but also has an algae problem. I dropped in a couple of big snails and a few baby snails a week ago, but all the snails disappeared and the algae remains. Today I tried dropping in a big snail and 5 babies again.

    Well, you guessed what happened... the betta saw one of the medium size babies drifting down, darted to it, and swallowed it! He then proceeded to hunt down every single one of the tiny snails... some of which I couldn't even spot because of all the plants and gravel... and ate them all within about 5 minutes! It was amazing.

    We expect that the betta will eventually go into the big tank and he will help keep the pond snail population down there. However, I'm a little concerned that he will go to town on 50 baby snails and constipate himself. Any thoughts on whether this is at all anything to worry about?
  2. CanadianFishFan Well Known Member Member

    If there small enough he could but he may also seem aggressive. Are you planning to put other fish in the 29gallon?
  3. tellin Valued Member Member

    Yes, we'll get a small school of tetras but it will probably remain very lightly stocked until the plants grow out. If the betta doesn't play well with others he can go back to his 5 gallon.
  4. CanadianFishFan Well Known Member Member

    Sounds like a good plan