Do snails eat fish eggs? This question is not easy to answer as there are many types of snails, and each species has its characteristics and diet.
Do not worry! We will help you answer this question and cover each type of snail in more detail. Now, keep reading to see more!
- 1 Do Snails Eat Fish Eggs?
- 2 What Do Snails Eat in the Wild?
- 3 What To Feed Mystery Snails in Your Tank?
- 5 How Often Should You Feed Your Mystery Snail?
- 6 FAQs
- 7 The Bottom Line
Do Snails Eat Fish Eggs?
The answer is Yes. Snails will consume fish eggs if they are large enough and have an opportunity.
Snails belong to the family of opportunistic feeders, so they will consume everything if they get a chance. It can be a severe problem for aquarists trying to breed their fish!
If you want to keep your fish tank in harmony, you’ll need to know more about each type of snail and their egg-eating habits.
Ramshorn snails tend to ignore fish eggs if they are not dead or rotten. Yet, for fish eggs that have already died, they can be a meal for ramshorn snails.
Basically, ramshorn snails will not consume living eggs. But if you leave your ramshorn snails starving, they will eat living eggs to survive.
As a result, when you begin a breeding tank, we recommend keeping these snails well-fed to avoid unwanted problems with your precious fish eggs.
Dwarf Ramshorn Snails
Dwarf ramshorns do generally not consume live fish eggs.
Instead, they prefer to graze them for algae. But these snails can crawl over fish and slime them up, potentially causing abnormal fungal growth in these eggs.
Pond snails are not interested in fish eggs like other species would be on our list. It does not mean they cannot eat them, especially infertile or rotting dead eggs.
Sometimes mystery snails eat live fish eggs, and some other times they don’t. It depends on the fish egg species in question and the appetite of snails.
These tiny snails are gluttonous, so they will consume everything. So, feed them well if you want to prevent them from consuming fish eggs.
As a member of the opportunistic eaters, Apple snails can eat fish eggs within a couple of seconds as long as they have a chance.
The good news is that apple snails are often fat and larger, making them unable to fit into breeding tubes or caves. But we recommend keeping them from your fish eggs.
Nerites only prefer soft algae and leaves. They will not consume eggs unless they’re starving to death. Some even would rather die than eat fish eggs.
What Do Snails Eat in the Wild?
What snails eat mainly depends on their species and their location. There are thousands of snail species, but you can categorize them into three main kinds: freshwater snails, saltwater snails, and land snails.
Whether snails live in the water or on land, they are usually herbivores, meaning they mainly consume plants, such as vegetables, fruit, leaves, etc.
Some snail types are omnivorous, meaning they may eat animal-based and plant-based food. There are also carnivorous species that consume only meat.
Some snails eat anything that is in their immediate area. Meanwhile, others may work harder to find foods they prefer to eat.
Most snails will not have a problem consuming dead or living plants, green leaves, fruits, mushrooms, vegetables, stems, and tree bark.
What To Feed Mystery Snails in Your Tank?
You can feed your freshwater aquarium snails with the following food:
- Algae: It is the primary and preferred food source for snails. Algae will grow in any aquarium with excessive warm water and light. So, keeping snails will be a great solution if your aquarium has too much algae.
- Fruits and Vegetables: Snails like vegetables such as lettuce, peas, carrots, and other leafy vegetables. It is best to wash and peel the vegetables thoroughly. You should also blanch hard vegetables before feeding your snails.
- Aquatic Plants: Some snails thrive on aquatic plants. But most snails like to eat dying and dead plant matter.
- Commercial Snail Food: You can feed your snails with fish food for bottom feeders like sinking shrimp pellets.
How Often Should You Feed Your Mystery Snail?
Snails don’t require frequent feeding. Depending on their species, you must feed them daily or twice weekly.
You should not feed your snails too much. Plus, don’t forget to remove all the uneaten food in your aquarium and provide them with fresh food daily.
Do Snails Eat Baby Fish?
In most cases, snails will not harm your live plants or fish. However, we have seen snails eat guppy fish. However, it was a dead guppy fish.
Do Aquarium Snails Eat Their Eggs?
Sometimes these snails eat their eggs or the eggs of other snails for the calcium they require to harden their shells.
Will Nerite Snails Eat Fish Eggs?
Nerite snails’ favorite food is soft algae and leaves. They tend not to eat eggs unless you starve them. Even would rather starve to death than eat fish eggs.
Are Too Many Snails Bad for a Fish Tank?
The short answer is Yes. Even a few snails can overpopulate your aquarium in a short period and out-compete your fish and other invertebrates for food.
Snails reproduce very quickly. So if you see a snail in your aquarium, you can expect to have more in just a couple of days.
A few snails won’t be a big deal. They can even help you control algae growth in your aquarium. But if they are over-breeding, you may need to cull them.
Are Snails Great for Fry Tanks?
Snails will be splendid companions if the fry has hatched and is freely swimming.
The Bottom Line
Do snails eat fish eggs? The short answer is yes. Most snails can eat fish eggs. However, not all snails prefer that.
The best way to prevent snails from eating fish eggs is to feed them well. Also, snails can multiply quickly, and you’ll likely need to cull them as needed.
Hopefully, the information we provide in this post is helpful to you. If so, please share them. Thank you for reading!
Alex is a pet freelance writer and editor with more than 10 years of experience. He attended Colorado State University, where he earned a Bachelor’s degree in Biology, which was where he first got some experience in animal nutrition. After graduating from University, Alex began sharing his knowledge as a freelance writer specializing in pets.