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Turbo Snail
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(Turbo fluctuosa) Easy Peaceful 2" Herbivore Substrate & Rocks 12 gallons Yes 72-78° F, dKH 8-12, sg 1.020-1.025, pH 8.1-8.4 None Grey, Tan, Brown, Red Caribbean, Mexico Turbinidae Snails The Turbo Snail, which is also commonly referred to as the Turban Snail, Mexican Turbo Snail or Top Shell, is found in holes and crevices of the reef. It is shaped like a top, or turban, and has a thick shell with an iridescent interior. Turbo Snails from the Gulf of California require cooler temperatures; however, most species in the aquarium trade are collected from the warmer waters around Mexico. Turbo Snails are sought after for their ability to eat large amounts of marine algae and cyanobacteria and are included in most algae cleaning crews. The Turbo Snail will do well in an aquarium if provided with ample places to hide and large amounts of room in which to graze for algae, preferably with live rock. The Turbo Snail also grazes on algae on the glass, which is very useful in keeping the algae on the glass under control in the aquarium environment. Since the Turbo Snail uses calcium to build its shell, adequate calcium levels must be maintained in the aquarium. Turbo Snails are very sensitive to high levels of copper-based medications and prefers a low nitrate level. Unfortunately it is extremely difficult to breed Turbo Snails in an aquarium, which means they will need to be replaced from time to time to make sure the algae growth is kept under control. Turbo Snails are very peaceful and are perfect for cleaning algae in either a fish only or reef aquarium. Some times they may be attacked by hermit crabs for their shell, but for the most part they will do well with other species of invertebrates and community fish species. The Turbo Snail is a herbivore and will eat most forms of algae found within the marine aquarium environment, including green hair and cyanobacteria. If insufficient algae is present, the diet should be supplemented with dried seaweed.
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Trochus Snail
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(Trochus sp.) Easy Peaceful 1" Herbivore Substrate & Rocks 12 gallons Yes 72-78° F, dKH 8-12, sg 1.020-1.025, pH 8.1-8.4 None Tan, Brown, Grey, Red Indo-Pacific Trochidae Snails The Trochus Snail is generally identified by its pyramid shaped shell, which is usually a pale tan or gray color with maroon stripes. Trochus Snails are also commonly referred to as the Banded Trochus Snail, Turban Shell, Turban Snail, or Top Shell within the aquarium hobby. The shell is often covered with algae since this species moves very slowly about the reef foraging for food, allowing the strong aquarium lighting to grow algae on the snails shell. Depending on the exact species these snails may have either a black or an off white/tan foot. The Trochus Snail has no distinguishing characteristics to help differentiate male from female as they reproduce by releasing gametes into the water column, which appears as a white milky substance. This is an easy to care for snail species that is excellent for keeping a reef or community fish aquarium clean by eating unwanted algae and diatoms. Trochus Snails do well in aquariums with ample hiding places and room to forage. Live rock is perfect for this species as it provides algae, cyanobacteria, and diatoms for food and plent of caves and crevices. The Trochus Snail is a desirable tank cleaner because it will consume algae, cyanobacteria, diatoms and also is an effective film algae eater, grazing on other surfaces, such as the sides of the tank. There are no specific lighting or water movement requirements for this species, but it is sensitive to high levels of copper-based medications and will not tolerate high nitrate levels. The Trochus Snail receives the bulk of its nutrition from foraging on algae and diatoms growing on the substrate, reef or aquarium glass. If insufficient food is present in the aquarium, their diet can be supplemented with dried seaweed or marine algae tablets.
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Tiger Cowry Snail
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(Cypraea tigris) Easy Peaceful 4" Carnivore Substrate & Rocks 30 gallons Yes, With caution 72-78° F, dKH 8-12, sg 1.020-1.025, pH 8.1-8.4 None White, Grey, Black, Brown Indo-Pacific Cypraeidae Snails Tiger Cowry Snails are found in Indo-Pacific waters, and as far east as Hawaii. They have a very interesting shell that varies in coloration based on region of collection, but is normally a glossy white and brown mottled coloration. Tiger Cowrys mantle will generally completely cover the shell unless it feels threatened. The fleshy mantle has a pattern of lines similar to that of a fingerprint and many short papillae found over its surface. This is a nocturnal species that will generally find a cave, crack or crevice to hide in during daylight hours and will feed at night. Unlike many other nocturnal species that tend to adjust to aquarium lighting and will come out when the lights are on, the Tiger Cowry is unlikely to be seen except when the lights are off. Moonlight LEDs available on many lighting systems commonly available on the market are excellent for this species as they allow for its viewing while still providing it with low lighting. Tiger Cowry Snails should be provided with plenty of live rock in order to provide places for them to hide during the day and plenty of area to forage for meaty food scraps. While this species of snail is suitable for reef aquariums when small, it will become destructive with age as it will feed on some anemones, sponges and soft corals. Tiger Cowry Snails make excellent additions to community fish aquariums that have plenty of live rock (FOWLR) as they will eat any meaty food scraps on the live rock or substrate. As with most all marine invertebrate species, the Tiger Cowry is sensitive to medium to high nitrate levels and will not tolerate copper-based medications. The Tiger Cowry snails diet varies depending on its age, with young specimens able to forage for food and adult specimens requiring supplemental feeding. Small Tiger Cowry Snails will forage for algae and meaty food scraps on live rock and the substrate. Larger specimens will require supplemental feedings of meaty foods such as chopped fish or mussel. Adult Tiger Cowry Snails will also feed on some sponges, anemones and soft corals and thus are not suitable for all reef aquarium environments.
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Red Foot Moon Snail
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(Norrisia norrisii) Moderate Peaceful 2" Herbivore Substrate & Rocks 12 gallons Yes 72-78° F, dKH 8-12, sg 1.020-1.025, pH 8.1-8.4 None Red, Orange, Brown, Tan West Coastal Areas US & Mexico Trochidae Snails Red Foot Moon Snails originate from the coastal waters on the pacific coast of Mexico. It is found in small crevices and caves along the coast feeding on a variety of marine algae. Since the waters off the pacific coast of Mexico are much cooler than the more tropical locations of most marine aquarium species, the Red Foot Moon Snails requires cooler aquarium water temperatures of around 70 to 75 degrees. While this species does have some specific water temperature requirements, it is an excellent tank cleaner that will readily consume most any type of marine algae and is reef safe. The Red Foot Moon Snail requires an aquarium with lots of live rock to provide it with both caves and crevices in which to live along with plenty of area for it to graze on algae. This species will readily consume most any type of marine algae found in the aquarium environment, and will readily graze on live rock, glass aquarium walls and the substrate. This species is considered moderately difficult to keep due to its water temperature requirements. The Red Foot Moon Snail originates from cooler waters than most coral reef species found in the aquarium environment, and requires cooler water temps around 70 to 75 degrees. It is important to provide calcium since it uses calcium to build it shell as it grows. As with most all marine invertebrates, the Red Foot Moon Snail is sensitive to high copper levels and high nitrate levels. The Red Foot Moon Snail is a pure herbivore, that will readily consume hair algae, green slime algae, red diatom algae, film algae and more. However, if there is not enough algae present in the aquarium, its diet can be supplemented with marine algae tablets or dried seaweed. Excellent algae clean up crew member suitable for both FOWLR and reef aquarium environments.
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Nassarius Snail
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(Nassarius sp.) Easy Peaceful 1" Herbivore Substrate & Rocks 12 gallons Yes 72-78° F, dKH 8-12, sg 1.020-1.025, pH 8.1-8.4 None Black, Brown, Green Widespread coastal areas Nassariidae Snails The Nassarius snail is a small scavenger with an oval spiral shell that resembles an olive pit, with a long tube-like siphon protruding from the front of its shell. It spends its time buried in soft substrate (sand or very finely crushed material) in with it uses its long tube-like siphon to detect food. Nassarius snails are one of the most ideal scavengers and detritus eaters for the reef aquarium, as they not only consume a wide variety of detritus, decaying fish food and organic matter, but they also do an excellent job of air aerating the substrate. They spend the majority of their time buried within the substrate, which helps maintain proper oxygen levels in the substrate which in turn keeps dead spots from forming. The Nassarius Snail should be kept in an established aquarium with live rock and a deep substrate bed, preferably sand or a sand mix. Established aquariums will provide a ready source of food for the Nassarius snail as there will be detritus or organic material already in the substrate so that the Nassarius snail will have a ready source of food upon being added to the aquarium. A soft substrate bed; such as sand, is important for housing this species as it spends the majority of its time buried in the substrate. Nassarius snails are sensitive to high nitrate levels and copper-based medications, which may preclude them from being kept in a community fish aquarium as fish-only aquariums tend to have higher nitrate levels than reef aquariums. Nassarius Snails are excellent scavengers and will readily consume detritus, uneaten food, fish waste and decaying organic material that has found its way to the aquarium substrate. Since this species sifts through the substrate of the aquarium looking for food, it is best suited for an established reef or community fish aquarium, so that a ready food source is available.
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Cerith Snail
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(Cerithium sp.) Easy Peaceful 2" Omnivore Substrate & Rocks 12 gallons Yes 72-78° F, dKH 8-12, sg 1.020-1.025, pH 8.1-8.4 None Varies Caribbean, Mexico Cerithiidae Snails The Cerith snail is a small scavenger snail with an elongated spiral shell that is usually black with tiny white dots covering the entire shell. They are small in size only reaching about 1 inch in length, which makes them perfect for the reef aquarium as they can get into small areas without their shell rubbing up against and disturbing anything. This species is extremely popular with "reef cleaner" packages as they are ideal scavengers, detritus eaters, and algae eaters consuming most any undesirable algae, cyanobacteria or decaying organics. Cerith Snails will often bury themselves in the sand, which will help maintain adequate oxygen levels in the substrate which eliminates dead spots from forming in the substrate. Overall an excellent aquarium cleaner that is peaceful and easy to keep. The Cerith Snail prefers an established aquarium with live rock and a deep sand bed. Cerith Snails are overall very easy to keep, but they are sensitive to high nitrate levels and copper-based medications. Ideally a soft substrate should be present as this species will burrow as well as scavenge live rock and aquarium walls. Cerith Snails are extremely peaceful and will not harm other tank mates, which makes them ideal for reef aquariums. The Cerith Snail is extremely difficult to breed in captivity, thus there numbers will need to be replaced over time. Cerith snails are one of the most ideal tank cleaners available as they will scavenge for detritus and algae. These snails are perfect for the reef aquarium, quickly devouring detritus, uneaten food, decaying organics, fish waste, and several types of nuisance algae. Cerith Snails should be added to established reef aquariums or fish aquariums with live rock where they will consume both decaying meaty foods as well as most forms of algae and cyanobacteria.
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Bumble Bee Snail
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(Engina sp.) Easy Peaceful 1" Omnivore Substrate & Rocks 12 gallons Yes 72-78° F, dKH 8-12, sg 1.020-1.025, pH 8.1-8.4 None Black, Yellow Caribbean, Western Atlantic Buccinidae Snails The Bumble Bee Snail is a distinctly colored small snail with yellowish bands on a dark brown background. It is very beneficial to both community and reef aquariums as it will roam the aquarium eating leftover meaty foods and detritus. The Bumble Bee Snail is an attractive and functional addition to any cleaner packs, as they focus on meaty foods and sifting through the aquarium substrate, where many other snail species tend to eat mostly algae of the rocks and glass. Its small size allows this species to get into tight places within the aquarium rock work; as well as, its ability to sift through the substrate helps eliminate dead spots and aerates the substrate. This species is easy to care for and provides an attractive and functional cleaner species that is also reef safe. Bumble Bee Snails do best in aquariums with live rock and a deep sand bed as they generally prefer to hide amongst the rock during the day and forage for detritus and leftover meaty foods at night. This species will not only scourer the live rock for leftover meaty foods, but will also burrow into the sand bed looking for food as well. Similar to the Nassarius snail, this species makes and excellent sand sifter and will help keep dead spots from forming within the substrate. The Bumble Bee Snail requires excellent water quality and will not tolerate high levels of nitrate levels. Like all snails, this species is intolerant of copper-based medications or high levels of copper in the water. Calcium levels will need to be maintained between 350 - 450 to assist this animal in continual growth and health, where the fleshy mantle of this animal deposits calcium based construction material continually. Bumble Bee Snails are carnivores that will feed on detritus and uneaten meaty foods both on the live rock and within the substrate. Similar to Nassarius Snails, this species will burrow into the substrate looking for uneaten food or decaying matter. Very good species of snail to use in conjunction with algae eating snails to consume any leftover meaty foods.
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